ALIEN NATION


"The Television Pilot"
Two hour version


Written by
Kenneth Johnson

January 16, 1989


ACT ONE

EXT. LOS ANGELES - NIGHT - A BROKEN DOWN WAREHOUSE

on the edge of Slagtown is being used as a refuge by a group of hoboes. A fire is burning in an oil drum, casting flickering shadows across the crumbling walls.

A hulking MAN enters the frame, lumbering toward the group - and as he gets closer we see that these aren't human hoboes, but NEWCOMERS. Getting loaded on SOUR MILK. - The man reacts with disgust and annoyance, veering off toward an inner part of the structure where a smaller fire is burning. He steps over a couple of unconscious Newcomers, seeing

A HUMAN VAGRANT - AMONG THE SHADOWS

shifting uncomfortably in some squalor.

THE MAN
Lincoln? That you?

The Vagrant grunts affirmatively. The Man sits nearby.

THE MAN
Good t'see a human. Gettin' so y'can't even find a decent place to crash any more.
(pulling out a bottle)
Damn, but I hate those slags. Can you believe they're trying t'give 'em the right t'vote? - Shoot. They don't even get drunk right. Whoever hearda getting loaded on sour milk when y'can have some good squeeze.

The Vagrant's body SHIVERS, he GROANS. He's suffering.

THE MAN
Y'don't sound too good. Y'want a taste?

He extends the bottle to The Vagrant, who leans forward, bringing his face into the flickering firelight. - It's grotesque. Splotched with ugly SORES. There are dark patches of SLIMY STAIN on his clothes. His hand is likewise infected with sores as he grabs the bottle. Takes a greedy slug. Holds it back out to the man

THE MAN
Uh... why don't y'keep it. ...What happened t'you, Linc?

The Vagrant's breathing grows MORE labored. He torches one of the sores, flinches in AGONY. His breathing accelerates.

THE MAN
Hey, y'know there's a free clinic over on third and -

A VOICE
Mr. Lincoln... I've been looking for you.

The man looks up to see a NEWCOMER in a Salvation Army uniform. The Newcomer smiles with benevolent concern.

THE NEWCOMER
We've been worried about you at the mission, you missed several
meals and -

The Vagrant stares at the Newcomer, then suddenly BELLOWS with pain. His eyes flash wildly!

THE MAN
Linc! - What the hell!?

The Vagrant skitters clumsily away from the Newcomer, shoves The Man aside. ROARS!

THE NEWCOMERS BY THE FIRE DRUM

react, startled when they see The Vagrant barreling blindly toward them, HOWLING! - He plows violently through them, knocking them aside, overturning the fire drum, rushing headlong against a wall. - He rebounds, his hands clutching his head, trying to suppress the searing PAIN within! - He runs in aimless agony up a decaying staircase.

THE MAN
Linc! Stop! Don't go up there!

THE NEWCOMER
Mr. Lincoln!

But The Vagrant rushes higher, bouncing off the old brick walls. The Salvation Army Newcomer is nervously pursuing him up the rickety stairs - finally reaching a high landing where The Vagrant has sunk to his knees in excruciating torment.

THE NEWCOMER
Mr. Lincoln, please - let me -

He reaches out, but The Vagrant SHOUTS, recoils violently against the rusty handrail - which gives way. He looks down, cries with pain -

And JUMPS three stories to his DEATH on the rubble below.

EXT. A MIDDLE - CLASS SUBURBAN STREET - DAY - A WOMAN

carrying a flowering plant with a ribbon on it, is walking toward a house where a moving van is unloading. A few other PEOPLE stand or pass nearby, their focus also on the house. They seem curious, stand-offish, - and not at all pleased.

The woman reaches the front door just as a NEWCOMER WOMAN, SUSAN, appears, wearing jeans and a faded Dodger sweatshirt. They startle each other.

THE WOMAN
Oh! - Sorry.

SUSAN
(smiling)
S'okay.
(to a mover with box)
In the dining room... thanks.

THE WOMAN
I'm Diane Mitchell. The blue house over there.

SUSAN
Susan Francisco. Hi.

DIANE
(re the plant)
A little "welcome to the neighborhood" gift.

SUSAN
(surprised, touched)
It's beautiful. And really nice of you. Thanks.

DIANE
Well, I've moved a few times myself. Sometimes it can be kinda traumatic.

Susan has been glancing out at the less friendly neighbors.

SUSAN
Yeah.

DIANE
I was going to bring some of my world - famous chocolate fudge, ...but I didn't know if you ate that sort of -

SUSAN
I love it. But my hips don't.
(mischievously)
...Bring it anyway.

A frowning nine year old NEWCOMER GIRL appears.

THE GIRL
Mom - I don't feel good.

SUSAN
Probably just nerves, honey. This is Emily. ...Ms. Mitchell.

DIANE
Diane. Hi, Emily.

EMILY
Hi.

DIANE
Wow, you sure look like your mom. ...Uh, I mean, y'know...

Emily shrugs, shyly. Another mover approaches.

SUSAN A MAN (O.S.)
That goes in the kitchen. Sus? Susan? - Just a sec!

EMILY
Mom, my stomach hurts.

DIANE
Look, I know you're busy. My phone number's on the card there if I can help.

SUSAN
That's dangerous, y'know. I just might call.

DIANE
Do.

SUSAN
(a smile)
Wouldn't want to interrupt you making fudge, though.

INT. THE HOUSE - GEORGE FRANCISCO

moves out of the bedroom, weaving through the boxes, pulling on his suit jacket. (The dialogue is fast, overlapping.)


GEORGE
Susan? Where'd you put my keys?

SUSAN
On the box. Look at this plant a lady down the street brought.

EMILY
Mom, it really hurts.

GEORGE
On the box. Now that's helpful.

SUSAN
(gently, to Emily)
'Cause it's your first day in a new school, Em. It'll be okay.

GEORGE
which box?

SUSAN
Try to eat a little more breakfast, Emmy.
(picking up keys)
...Some detective.

GEORGE
(pulling her close)
Are you giving me a hard time?

SUSAN
Yes. You get to run off and play cops and robbers while I -

GEORGE
Have the pleasure of moving into our new home. - Where'd this plant come from?

SUSAN
God help the LAPD. I just told you. - Are there any signs of life from your son?

GEORGE
(holding her, shouting)
- Buck! Off and On!

SUSAN
Thanks, I needed that.

GEORGE
(re the plant)
A lady from down the street. See? I listen. Maybe you did all that worrying for nothing.

SUSAN
(unconvinced)
...Maybe.

GEORGE
- Buck!?

A fifteen year old Newcomer shuffles out, sleepy, and annoyed.

BUCK
...I'm coming. But will y'please call me Finiksa and not that dumb tert name.

EXT. GEORGE'S HOUSE - FROM ACROSS THE STREET

A ten year old (JILL) and her frowning MOTHER watch as George kisses Susan and Emily goodbye.

JILL'S MOTHER
I can't believe it, after all we paid for this house and all we've put into it.

JILL
What's wrong?

JILL'S MOTHER
Our property's not gonna be worth half of what we've paid.

JILL
Why?

JILL'S MOTHER
Why do you think. ...Damn slags.

The woman casts a last searing look toward George's house, and walks back inside, muttering an angry profanity. Jill watches her, then looks back at Emily, who meets her eyes.


EXT. A CEMETERY - DAY - A GRAVESTONE

marks the final resting place of "Sergeant William Tuggles, LAPD - B:1950 D:l991." A man's hand places a small bunch of flowers on the grave.

THE MAN (O.S.)
Can't believe y'been gone a month already, Tuggs.

ANGLE ACROSS THE GRAVESTONE TO THE MAN

This is Detective Lieutenant MATTHEW SIKES. He stares at the grave, speaks quietly...

SIKES
...Really miss ya, man.
(a pause)
...Least I nailed the slag who got you, huh? ...Yeah. Big deal.

He stares at the grave a moment longer, feeling the frustration of his loss and inability to have done more. Finally he sighs and turns away.


INT. THE POLICE STATION COFFEE ROOM - DAY - SGT. DOBBS

a black, plainclothes cop, is pouring coffee into his PERSONALIZED MUG, speaking to Sikes, who's back is to us.

DOBBS
This slag comes in with a duck under his arm. So the bartender
says, "what's the pig want to drink?" - The slag says, "It's
not a pig, it's a duck." - And the bartender says -

SIKES
(turning to him)
"I'm Talkin' to the duck."

DOBBS
Awwww, y'heard it.

SIKES
I heard 'em all.

George appears in the doorway behind them. They're unaware.

DOBBS
Yeah I guess you woulda. Givin' a slag for a new partner.

SIKES
He's not my partner okay Dobbs? My partner got killed in a
shoot-out, remember? - This putz is just an assignment.

DOBBS
Teach ya t'mouth off at the old man, huh? Grazer gets promoted to captain - and you get a slag partn - "assignment."
(imitating their chief)
"What the hell you think you are, Sikes, one man police force? Just cause your name starts with 'S.' don't make you Serpico - or Stallone."

SIKES
Yeah... okay...

DOBBS
"Just 'cause you got the best arrest record on the East Side don't give you the right to be a hot dogger."

SIKES
I said okay.

DOBBS
"It's time you learned t'be a team player, dammit, and I got the perfect new partner for you: first Newcomer detective. - And the fact that I lost five hundred dollars t'you in the Series's got nothing t'do with it."

SIKES
You want this coffee in your crotch?

DOBBS
Hey, lighten up, Sikes. - How 'bout this one: slag goes into a bowling alley -

GEORGE
Morning, Matt.

Sikes mumbles hello. Dobbs smirks and leaves. George hands Sikes a small white bag.

SIKES
What's this?

GEORGE
Bran muffin, a little prune juice. You mentioned yesterday -

SIKES
What're you? A pocktologist? How 'bout y'be a good little slag and mind your own business.

He pushes past George, who sighs and follows him through the busy station, passing other cops and clerks, a few of whom are Newcomers.

GEORGE
Matt, if I could suggest... I don't really care how you refer to me privately, but when we're questioning other Newcomers...

SIKES
(annoyed)
What, what...

GEORGE
The word slag equates to such words as kyke and nigger. - And I think you'll get more honey with a pound of vinegar than a pound of flies.

Sikes stops. Looks at him. Draws a breath. Gives up. Walks on.

SIKES
Never mind. - Yeah. Okay.

GEORGE
Incidentally, I think it's proctologist.

SIKES
Whatever.

They pass a woman cop (PUENTE) and a reporter (BURNS).

BURNS
C'mon, disappearances're no good. No photos. My editor wants something hot. Visual.

PUENTE
Yeah, like y'last photo essay: "The Fishwoman of Long Beach."

BURNS
Sold a lotta papers.

A NEWCOMER JANITOR passes them, carrying a fluorescent tube.


DOBBS
Hey Lightning can y'dump my circular file?

This Newcomer (ALBERT) is a bit slow-witted. He looks puzzled.

DOBBS
Trash can, Albert, my trash can.

ALBERT
Oh. Sure th-thing, Sergeant Dobbs.

DOBBS
(to a Newcomer cop)
I thought all you guys were s'posed to be whiz kids.

THE NEWCOMER COP
I thought all you guys had rhythm.

Dobbs smiles. Shows off his tap dance. Albert has picked up the trash can, but the fluorescent tube he's carrying NUDGES Dobbs' personalized mug - causing it to fall onto the floor and SHATTER.

DOBBS
Hey! Aw, man look at - ! Aw dammit!

Albert is mortified. Drops to his knees to pick up the pieces.

ALBERT
I'm s-sorry, sergeant... I-

DOBBS
My kid gave me that, man. Damn.

He turns away angrily. Albert puts the pieces carefully into the trash can. Wanting to die.

ANGLE ACROSS SIKES' DESK - HIS DAUGHTER'S PHOTO IN F.G.

signed, "Daddee - I love you!" - Sikes sits. George hovers.

PUENTE
Hey Sikes, got a couple more disappearances in Slagtown. Somma these names kill me: Mort Dakota, Eleanor Roosevelt...

SIKES
The guys in quarantine musta got pretty punchy givin' names to all those sla- Newcomers.

GEORGE
(looking at the papers)
Disappearances...?

PUENTE
Aw, they're always knocking each other off down there.
(aside to Sikes)
I say let 'em, huh? - oh, and some bum took a three story dive on Alameda. Pretty grisly.

BURNS
(from across the room)
Grisly?! - Did I hear grisly?


EXT. THE BROKEN DOWN WAREHOUSE - DAY - A VAGRANT'S FACE

Dead. Staring. His face splotched with ugly SORES. Dark patches of SLIMY STAIN are on his clothes.

SIKES
Jeeze. Look at those sores. That slime. Bag him. - Bluckh.

He turns away, nauseous. The group of curious ONLOOKERS, as well as the BILLBOARDS nearby, include a number of Newcomer faces. One billboard shows a smiling human shaking hands with a Newcomer. The Copy reads, "Let's ALL vote! - Yes on 16." George approaches with the SALVATION ARMY NEWCOMER.

GEORGE
Matt, this is Philip Adelphia. He said -

SIKES
Wait a minute: Phil Adelphia?

MR. ADELPHIA
I'm afraid so. But I hear it's the City of Brotherly Love, so at least that's something.

GEORGE
He works at the Mission over on third.

SIKES
You know the deceased?

MR. ADELPHIA
Peter Lincoln was the name he used, poor man. He came regularly for his meals. When he missed two of them, I came looking. He seemed to be out of his mind from the pain of those sores. He broke away from me, ran up those stairs and jumped.

SIKES
Okay. Could you just give your statement to one of those officers. ...And thanks.

GEORGE
(walking with Sikes)
What are you thinking?

SIKES
I woulda jumped, too, if I had all those zits. - Suicide. Let's get a doughnut.
(walking, shouting off)
Too late, Burns, he's in the bag.

BURNS
(readying his camera)
C'mon, I gotta get some photos! What am I gonna tell my editor?!

SIKES
Beats the hell outta me. Why don't y'tell him t'wrap fish in his paper - that's all it's worth.

INT. THEIR POLICE CAR - SIKES & GEORGE

SIKES
I hate that guy - and the rag he works for. Shoulda seen the crap they wrote about Tuggs when he got killed, made him sound like a jerk or - S'matter? That is a worried look, huh? Sometimes it's hard to tell.

GEORGE
I just want to follow up on that vagrant's autopsy.

SIKES
Whatever turns you on.

RADIO VOICE
All units in the vicinity of Euclid Elementary. We have a major disturbance reported.

GEORGE
(reacting sharply)
Can we go over there?

SIKES
What? C'mon, George, I really want a doughnut. I'll buy ya a piece of spleen or something, let's -

GEORGE
It's my daughter's school.


EXT. EUCLID ELEMENTARY - DAY - AN ANGRY WOMAN

on the back of a pickup is shouting through a megaphone.

THE WOMAN
Yes, I'm a Purist, and I'm proud of its These damn slags were bred to be slaves - so let 'em be slaves!

A MOB of two hundred of MIXED ETHNICITY is gathered outside the school. Many SHOUT agreement. Others, including a few Newcomers, BOO loudly!

THE WOMAN
And they breed like rabbits - only four months instead of nine - pretty soon there won't be any room left for the rest of use
(more shouts of agreement)
The Japanese already own 62% of L.A. - every other Mexican you see is illegal - we don't need any more damned aliens!

SHOUTS from BOTH viewpoints, "Damn rights Tell 'em!" - "They're smarter than you are, lady!" etc. Police cars roll in, Sikes & George among them.

THE WOMAN
We shouldn't give 'em the right to vote and we shouldn't let 'em into our schools! - This has always been a good school. We gotta keep it that way! We don't want her kind here!

The woman points toward Emily, being held shelteringly by Susan - and facing a line of parents with their arms interlocked, blocking entrance into the school. A SUPPORT GROUP around Emily REACT ANGRILY against the woman's contingent.

A SUPPORTER
She's got a right to go to schools

THE WOMAN
They've got schools in Slagtown!

ANOTHER SUPPORTER
She doesn't live there anymore.

THE WOMAN
Let her move back!

More VOCALIZATION from the mob. Some for, others against. It's getting ANGRIER. George has found Susan and Emily. Sikes holds back slightly.

THE WOMAN
They learn too fast. It's unnatural They're already taking too many jobs. - Our jobs! We let her in here now, there'll be a hundred more next weeks

JILL'S MOTHER
(takes the megaphone)
We don't want her mixin' with our kids! Their quarantine wasn't long enough! The ACLU got 'em released too soon! How do we know they're really safe!?

The crowd REACTS LOUDLY both PRO and CON. Jill watches Emily, who's stoic.

THE WOMAN
I say we run 'em back to Slagtown - and we do it now!

Both factions of the crowd ROAR! But those on Emily's side are clearly outnumbered. There's about to be a RIOT. Suddenly a GUNSHOT startles everyone! They look toward the man with the smoking gun. It's Sikes. He takes stage, BELLOWING -

SIKES
Why stop with running 'em back to Slagtown? Why don't we just kill 'em all?! Huh!?

He FIRES again. Everyone blinks at his vehemence. Even George.

SIKES
That's the American way, isn't its? - Enough of us get together it'll almost seem legal. - Put little pointy sheets over our heads and hang us a few slags! Teach 'em a lesson! Huh!? - Keep 'em in their places - Keep America Pure! We don't even need t'paint stars on 'em to recognize 'em, do we? They'll be easy t'round up. Hell, they even stand out better than all the Japs we threw into concentration camps in 1941! - This'll be a piece o'cake! Let's start with this one right here.

He takes Emily very gently by the arm, WINKING supportively.

SIKES
Just 'cause she's an American citizen, doesn't make her a human being does it?! So what if she's brighter than a lot of our kids, - we can beat that out of hers Discourage her enough and she'll give up. - Who cares that she might've come up with a cure for cancer someday. She'll never be civilized like us! Let's just put a gun to her head and end it right here.

He holds out his gun to one of the linked-arm protesters.

SIKES
C'mon, pull the trigger. Well, take its - C'mon!
(to the woman on the truck)
How 'bout you, Ms. Purists I know you wanna come pull the trigger! Get on over here!

The protesters are nonplused. Sikes puffs, exasperatedly.

SIKES
What? - I have to do it myself? - Okay.

He RAISES the pistol, COCKS IT. The crowd is MORE startled !

JILL'S MOTHER
No! we don't want her dead! We just want her back where she belongs.

SIKES
(low, focused)
She belongs here.

He turns to face the line of people, riveting on a BLACK MAN.

SIKES
Aren't you ashamed. ...You.

The black man can't sustain the intensity of Sikes glares The man drops his eyes, - and his arms. The line is broken.

George and Susan watch as Sikes walks Emily to the door, where he eyes the principal and a couple of teachers. Including a BLACK WOMAN.

SIKES
Anybody gives this youngster any trouble answers to me. Got that?

They nod. Sikes turns to Emily, squats to her eye level.

SIKES
Y'okay?
(off her nod)
Good girl. Go show 'em your stuff.

He gives her another wink. Her eyes hold on his for a beat. She gathers in some of his courage, and goes inside. The Black Teacher puts a welcoming arm around Emily's shoulder.

Sikes watches her disappear, has a PRIVATE MOMENT of his own, then turns to face the crowd.

SIKES
Party's over. Anybody still here in three minutes is under arrest for violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. - I'm starting my watch... - Now.

The crowd begins to disperse. Some pleased, others mumbling angrily. Sikes' eyes fall on George who is gazing at him. Sikes looks away.


EXT. A HEART ASSOCIATION BILLBOARD - LATE DAY

showing a smiling Newcomer between two human doctors, each of whom hold a stethoscope to the Newcomer's chest. The copy reads: "Not all of us have two hearts. Take care of yours." - The camera tilts down to a PHONE BOOTH wherein a Newcomer, whom we don't see well enough to recognize, is on the phone.

THE NEWCOMER
Yes... They brought him into the morgue this morning... No, a human. Sores all over him. And they looked like... yes. ...Not yet. The autopsy's not scheduled till tomorrow. ...Yes, that's exactly what worries me, too. It could be big trouble. Very big trouble.


INT. GEORGE'S HOUSE - NIGHT - GEORGE, SUSAN & EMILY

sit amid half-unpacked moving boxes at their kitchen table.

SUSAN
We were both proud of you, honey. I'm not saying I wasn't proud of her - just that it's a terrible strain for her to be under.

GEORGE
Was it, Emmy?

SUSAN
Tell your father how they stared at you.

EMILY
Yeah they did a lot. But I figured they would. Like you said.

SUSAN
And the wisecracks.

EMILY
Yeah, I heard some. Couple kids smiled at me, though.

GEORGE
Did you make any friends?

EMILY
Just Ms. Murdoch, my teacher.

SUSAN
See what I mean.

GEORGE
It was her first day, Sus, you have to give it a little time. - Think you can give it some time, Em?

EMILY
Yeah. ...I like the school.

SUSAN
(surprised)
You do?

EMILY
Yeah. It's nicer than the one I went to before. It has bigger windows and more light. Not like those trailers. - And there's a computer right in the rooms Ms. Murdoch taught me how to write my name on it!

GEORGE
You liked that.

EMILY
Yeah. It was really neat!

GEORGE
Is this your homework?

EMILY
Uh huh. Just math. It's easy.

SUSAN
Will you help her with it while I get dinner?

EMILY
I don't need any help, momma.

George looks at Susan. Allows himself a little, proud smile. Susan rises, straightens the counter tops. Buck enters.

GEORGE
How was it at your school, Buck?

BUCK
{Finiksa, huh dad?}

(Note: {} indicates SUBTITLED DIALOGUE spoken in the Newcomer language.)


GEORGE
I want you to use your English name now.

BUCK
{why? It sucks.}

GEORGE
Please use it. - How was your school?

BUCK
It was okay.
(he exits)

SUSAN
You didn't eat much lunch, Em.

EMILY
Wasn't too hungry.

SUSAN
Did anybody eat with you?

EMILY
(intent on her homework)
Huh? No.

Susan's jaw sets. George pats Emily's arm, goes to Susan.

GEORGE
...What...?

SUSAN
(quiet, intense)
What do you think! How do you think I feel knowing that she's sitting there at lunch all by herself.

GEORGE
I'm sure that happens to a lot of kids on their first day.

She turns. Stares at him a moment. Then turns sharply away.

SUSAN
Right, George.

He watches her a moment. Eases off the subject.

GEORGE
Matt was rather amazing, wasn't he?


SUSAN
(softening slightly)
Yes, he was. I called to thank him. Left a message on his machine. Invited him over.

GEORGE
He only said about ten words to me the rest of the day.

SUSAN
...That's more than Emmy got.

She moves off. George stands, silently.


EXT. SIKES' APARTMENT BUILDING - NIGHT - SIKES

is just coming home to this place which is past it's prime.

INT. SIKES' APARTMENT - SECOND FLOOR - THE ELEVATOR

which works sometimes, opens, Sikes gets out, noticing two moving men struggling to get a bureau into an apartment.

A WOMAN'S VOICE
Yeah, that's it. Little bit left.

He pauses to check out his new neighbor. And as the movers go in through the door they reveal CATHY - an attractive female NEWCOMER. She finds herself looking right at Sikes. Smiles.

CATHY
Hi.

Sikes nods. She disappears into her flat. Sikes turns to unlock his door. Majorly disgruntled.

SIKES
Wonderful. ...Why My building?

He is unlocking his door when Cathy reappears, carrying a cardboard file box.

CATHY
Excuse me... Matthew Sikes?

SIKES
Yeah.

CATHY
A woman dropped this off, asked me to give it to you.

SIKES
Thanks.

He goes inside, closes the door. Cathy stares at it, wryly...

CATHY
Nice meeting you, too.


INT. SIKES' APARTMENT - NIGHT

Cluttered, eclectic. A large N gauge train set occupies one corner. He looks curiously at the file box, starts to open it as the phone RINGS. He grabs it.

SIKES
Yeah?

INT. A BEDROOM CORNER - NIGHT - A BLACK WOMAN - INTERCUT

THE WOMAN
Matt? It's Lyddie. Did you get it?

SIKES
Yeah, what is it, Lyd?

LYDDIE
I'm not sure. I found it buried in Tuggs' stuff. There was a note on it said to give it to you if anything...
(her eyes well)

SIKES
(senses it, gently)
Hey...

LYDDIE
...I saw the flowers you left for him.

SIKES
How'd y'know I left 'em.

A pause. She smiles faintly.

SIKES
...Right. ...How y'doin'?

LYDDIE
Well, y'know...

SIKES
Yeah. I do.
(drawing a breath)
Look, I'll go through this stuff and let y'know what it is.

LYDDIE
Okay... and Matt...

SIKES
Yeah?

LYDDIE
- oh never mind.

SIKES
Don't y'just love it when people do that?

LYDDIE
Oh, it's nothing. Paranoia.

SIKES
(unsatisfied, prying)
Lyddieeee...

LYDDIE
Well... when I came back from dropping that package off to you... I thought someone had been in the house.

SIKES
...Why?

LYDDIE
I dunno. Nothing was taken. Nothing seemed out of place. It was just a feeling. Instinct.

Sikes is chewing on his lip, very thoughtful, but trying to soothe her.

SIKES
Been a cop's wife too long, huh?

LYDDIE
(wistfully)
No... it never woulda been long enough.

SIKES
(a smile)
...Well, keep your door locked, huh? And call me whenever y'need to, okay?

LYDDIE
...Yeah. ...Thanks, Matt.

He hangs up slowly. Looks at the phone. Then at the file box. He opens the box. There are a list of papers.

SIKES
Geeze.

He stares at the contents very thoughtfully. His instincts are buzzing, too. He chews his lip. - Something's up.


ACT TWO

INT. THE POLICE STATION - DAY - SIKES

is walking through, passes a younger, buttoned-down man.

THE MAN
Morning, Sikes.

SIKES
(without looking)
Hiya... "Captain."

The younger man, CAPTAIN GRAZER, chuckles to himself.

DOBBS
Hey Sikes, y'like anything at Santa Anita today?

SIKES
Fifty on Happy Face to win in the second.

GEORGE
(hanging up a phone)
Morning, Matt.
(off his grunt)
That was the morgue. The body of that vagrant we brought in...?

SIKES
Yeah?

GEORGE
It disappeared last night.

Sikes looks up, shocked. George and Sikes leave their desks and head toward the morgue.

INT. POLICE CORRIDOR - MOVING.

GEORGE
I want to thank you again for how you helped Emily.

INT. POLICE ELEVATOR.

SIKES
Just doing my job man.

GEORGE
It seemed like more than that, it seemed like someone who really identified with her, somebody who knew what it was like to be an underdog.

Sikes ignores him, pressing the elevator buttons.

SIKES
These elevators are so slow.

GEORGE
I knew a man once who was discriminated against, when he was young, because he was small for his age. Made him different from the others. They always picked on him, chose him last for teams.

Sikes gives George a LOOK.

GEORGE
What?

SIKES
Nothin'.

INT. POLICE CORRIDOR - EXITING ELEVATOR

GEORGE
Susan and I sincerely appreciate it. Did you her message? She'd really like to have you come over tonight.

SIKES
(No)
Yeah, maybe.

GEORGE
Oh, and Matthew...

SIKES
Matt!

GEORGE
Happy Face is stuck in the outside going a mile. He hasn't got enough speed to get positioned before the first turn. you might want to reconsider Miracle Worker or -

SIKES
You come from another damn galaxy and you're telling me howta play the horses?

He pushes gruffly through the double doors into

THE MORGUE - SIKES AND DOCTOR LEE

An Oriental with a cynical edge and an unsettling glint in his eye. George walks behind. Lee speaks aside to Sikes:

LEE
I heard you got stuck with one of 'em, too? Great, huh? (indicating his Newcomer assistant) I mean, how can I take somebody seriously with a name like Amos N. Andy?

He pulls an empty slab out of the body refrigerator.

LEE
Gonzo. Who the hell would want to steal that body?

SIKES
Beats the hell outta me.

LEE
I was gonna do the autopsy this morning. Wanted to check out those sores. They looked really delicious.

SIKES
Who else has access here?

LEE
Well, it's not exactly Fort Knox.

GEORGE
Still, carrying a body out would've attracted some attentions

LEE
Now I see why they made you a detective.


INT. THE JANITOR'S ROOM - DAY - ALBERT THE JANITOR

has the numerous PIECES of Dobbs' broken mug spread carefully before him. He's methodically trying to figure out which piece goes where. And not doing very well. Sikes enters.

SIKES
Hey, I got some questions for you, Lightning - What's your real name again?

ALBERT
{Glenza Mantwea.}

GEORGE
He means the English name they gave you in quarantine.

ALBERT
(slowly, proudly)
Oh. - Albert. Einstein.

SIKES
Perfect. - You in the morgue last night?

ALBERT
(insecure)
Uh... no.

SIKES
C'mon, don't gimme that. who took the body?

ALBERT
What b-body?

SIKES
Albert, I haven't even had my coffee yet, and I get real irritable - you know damn well what body! Who took it?

ALBERT
I... didn't know any body was -

SIKES
Don't gimme that crap, ya-
(backing off, to George)
You..

GEORGE
Sure.
(gently, to Albert)
{Nobody's going to get angry with you, OK?}
But if you know anything it's very important you tell me.
(off Albert's look)
What...?

ALBERT
(haltingly, scared)
He told me he had a right to see it. I... I remembered from the c-constitution. He d-did. He didn't say anything about ...t-taking the body. He just wanted me to leave the door unlocked... so he could t-take some pictures... of it.

GEORGE
Who, Albert?

ALBERT
The reporter... Mr. Burns.

SIKES
That slimeball.
(heading out)

ALBERT
I'm in tr-trouble, huh?

GEORGE
I'll do what I can, but next time you're not completely sure how to handle something, you come ask me, okay?

ALBERT
Y-yeah, George. I'll ask you.

He worriedly watches George leave, then looks back at the pieces of the broken mug. It seems to be an impossible task.


EXT. EMILY'S SCHOOL PLAYGROUND - EMILY

is on a swing, enjoying herself. She notices a group of kids nearby talking, laughing, and glancing at her. Then one of them, MARK, a boy her age in a WHEELCHAIR, rolls up.

MARK
Hi.

EMILY
Hi.

MARK
We're gonna play catch, y'wanna play?

EMILY
Sure.

She hops off the swing and moves-toward the group. One of the kids tosses the large rubber ball to Emily who catches it - then reacts. The ball is covered with gooey RUBBER CEMENT. - The other kids HOWL with LAUGHTER.

MARK
You oughta "stick" to your own side of town, spongehead.

He laughs, wheels back toward the laughing kids. - Emily stands there awkwardly. Trying to figure out how to get the mess off of her hands.

A couple of other kids nearby SEEM SYMPATHETIC, but say nothing. Then Emily's neighbor, Jill, passes by, speaking aside:

JILL
Just let it dry a little, then rub your hands together. It'll come right Off.

Jill keeps walking past, but glances back to see if Emily heard. Emily is about to say thanks, but Jill disappears among some other kids. Emily is curious about her.


INT. A POLICE CAR - SIKES & GEORGE

SIKES
(into radio)
Miracle Worker won?! By how much?

DOBBS (ON RADIO)
Two lengths over Happy Face. - Fifty bucks, Sikes-ie.

SIKES
Yeah, yeah. Unit 7 clear.
(to George)
Y'pick many winners?

GEORGE
Only seven out of nine yesterday.

SIKES
Five outta!? Where'd you learn?

GEORGE
Looking through some of your old racing newspapers. It's quite fascinating, all of the variables: the horse's race record, running style, which track is-

SIKES
Man, I don't get it. Here y'are bred t'be slaves and most of ya got minds like-

GEORGE
Many slaves in our culture were required to do highly technical-

SIKES
(re a racing sheet)
Yeah, okay, so who d'ya like in the sixth?

GEORGE
(without looking)
Morning Sunshine.

SIKES
Morning Sunshine?! Gimme a break. She's been falling off every-

He sees something he's been watching for, and pulls toward the
curb.

GEORGE
What're you doing? This isn't Burns' apartment. ...Matt?

Sikes is already out of the car and looking at

EXT. AN APPARENTLY ABANDONED INDUSTRIAL BUILDING - DAY

GEORGE
What is this place?

SIKES
(preoccupied)
Beats the hell outta me.

GEORGE
Something to do with the vagrant's body?

SIKES
No.

GEORGE
(staring at him)
You just have a fondness for old buildings?

Sikes doesn't answer. He has bent open a section of chain link fence and gone onto the property. George follows, muttering,

GEORGE
...Or a fondness for being a horse's ass.

THE BUILDING - CLOSER - SIKES

has tried to peer in through the dirty windows, in vain. The nearby door is padlocked. Be finds an iron bar nearby and slips it through the lock, straining to break it. But he can't. George walks up slowly.

GEORGE
I hate to pry, but perhaps if you told me what-

SIKES
Wanna pry something? Pry that.

GEORGE
Do we have a search warrant?

SIKES
I got your search warrant.

GEORGE
Oh. Alright then.

George applies his surprising strength to the bar and snaps open the lock. Sikes is impressed, but tries not to show it.

INT. THE BUILDING - ANGLE ON THE DOOR - DAY

as it CREAKS open. Sikes & George enter to discover that - it's completely EMPTY. Sikes frowns with annoyance. Then he realizes that George is sensing something.

SIKES
What?

GEORGE
That's very curious...

SIKES
What is?

GEORGE
(shrugging it off)
Nothing.

SIKES
Tell me what is curious.

GEORGE
Tell me what we're doing here.

A pause. Sikes breaks away, poking around.

SIKES
My partner Tuggs left me this file box of stuff, okay? I started looking through it last night. Most of it seems t'be research he was doing on slavery. He was black, y'know?

GEORGE
Yes.

SIKES
Anyway, stuck in the side is a piece o'paper with this place's address. Underlined twice.

GEORGE
That meant it was important.

SIKES
Twice? Yeah. He was an understated guy. To him twice meant real important.

GEORGE
Well, it looks like whatever was important is gone.

SIKES
Okay, so tell me what you thought was curious.

GEORGE
Well, when I came in here there was a faint smell that reminded me-

SIKES
Of-?

GEORGE
The atmosphere aboard our spacecraft.

They look at each other. Puzzled. George shrugs. Sikes blows out a frustrated puff.

SIKES
...Alright, let's get back to work.

INT. REPORTER BURNS FLAT - DAY

which reflects his tabloid tastes.

BURNS
I'm telling you I wasn't in the morgue last night.

GEORGE
Albert says you were.

BURNS
Yeah, well he's not exactly a rocket scientist, is he?

SIKES
And we found your fingerprints on the slab.

BURNS
I never touched it! I just-

SIKES
Took some photos. Right.

BURNS
(whiny)
C'mon, Sikes, it was one o'the ugliest corpses I've ever seen. It was beautiful.

SIKES
So you took it with you.

BURNS
Get serious. I got cold-cocked.

GEORGE '
You got cold what?

SIKES
Clubbed from behind. By who?

BURNS
Dunno. Some Mex guy came in the back door. Surprised I was there.

George has picked up an ice bag, shows it to Sikes.

GEORGE
Where were you struck?

BURNS
Right back here, see?

George inspects Burns head and shoulder.

SIKES
So y'didn't see who nailed ya.

BURNS
No.

GEORGE
And you didn't you report it because you weren't supposed to be there anyway.

SIKES
Right. Let's go, George. - Hey Burns, try to skip out and I'll find you a Permanent place in the morgue.
(re the apartment)
'Course, it'd be an improvement.


EXT. A RUN-DOWN STREET ON THE EDGE OF SLAGTOWN - DAY - BUCK

is bouncing down the street, tagging along with a tough-looking gang of six OLDER NEWCOMER YOUTHS, all speaking in their guttural tongue as they pass various ad posters featuring Newcomer faces.

FIRST TOUGH (SVABO)
{So you ain't even been to your new school, huh Finiksa?}

BUCK
{No way.}

SECOND TOUGH (BLENTU)
{Might pick up some little tert cutie!}

BUCK
{C'mon, man, they're ugly as hell.}

SVABO
{All the humans suck, man.}

BLENTU
{Damn right. Tellin' us how we gonna be free!}

BUCK
{Long as we stay in Slagtown!}

SVABO
{Say it, brother.}

BLENTU
{"Don't take our jobs!"}

BUCK
{"Don't take our space!"}

BLENTU
{How 'bout we take his van?}

Blentu's looking across the street where a BLACK DELIVERY MAN has the back of a step van open, checking a load of furniture.

The gang rolls over him like a tsunami, spinning him into a bunch of trash cans, jumping into his van and driving away shouting catcalls out of the open back door.

INT. THE VAN - BLENTU IS DRIVING

SVABO
{Alright, man! Excellent!}

BLENTU
{Check it out! We got a sofa, a table, some chairs!}

BUCK
(nervous excitement)
{Now all we need's a place to put it!}

EXT. - THE STREET

as the van weaves deeper into the low rent district.


INT. NIMIC LINEN SERVICE - DAY - SIKES & GEORGE

move through the washers and dryers with the MANAGER who is a NEWCOMER. Other Newcomers are among the workers.

SIKES
And one of your trucks was making a delivery last night.

THE MANAGER
(checking a clipboard)
Yeah, police station's on the schedule. Something wrong?

GEORGE
We think they might've picked up something they shouldn't have. By mistake. Can you tell us who the drivers were and-

SIKES
Hang On!

He was just passing a radio and something caught his ear.

THE RADIO VOICE
And the winner of the sixth race at Santa Anita was Morning Sunshine. Paying fifteen thirty, six twenty and-

THE MANAGER
What, y'have some money down?

SIKES
...Guess I should've.

He looks at George who is smiling to himself. Like Clark Kent.

SIKES
Yeah... alright, so where are the guys that made the pick up?

THE MANAGER
Neither one came in today.

GEORGE
We need their addresses. And where is the truck?

EXT. BACK ALLEY - A LAUNDRY TRUCK

George explores the inside. Sikes leans against it.

GEORGE
So. Will you come for dinner tonight?

SIKES
Thanks, y'know, but I'm not really into raw beaver and stuff like you all.

GEORGE
Susan won't make anything you'd find offensive. We'd really like to express our thanks - and get to know you better.

SIKES
Well, I dunno. ...What about football?

GEORGE
That's the game with the little pointy ball?

SIKES
Right. The little pointy ball. - You trying t'con me?

GEORGE
(a smile)
Don't know the meaning of the word.

SIKES
Yeah, right. So how d'ya do with picking football winners?

GEORGE
Only about eighty-two percent. Hand me a card.

SIKES
(gives him an index card)
You serious? Eighty-two?

GEORGE
(coming out)
The body was in this truck.
(re the index card)
Some of that slime that was on the body. - Don't touch it.

He folds it carefully, puts it in a small plastic bag.

SIKES
Who d'ya like in the Rams/Cowboys game?

GEORGE
Have to do a little research. ...I could tell you at dinner.

SIKES
Aaaah, y'can tell me tomorrow.

GEORGE
But the game's tonight.

Sikes is trapped. He smirks. Nods. George smiles at him.


INT. SIKES' APARTMENT CORRIDOR - NIGHT - THE ELEVATOR

opens and Sikes struggles out carrying his cleaning on hangers and a bag of groceries with flowers sticking out the top. The elevator door closes too soon, knocking him off balance. The bag begins to rip.

SIKES
Aw...c'mon - dammit!

CATHY
(approaching)
I'll get it.

SIKES
S'okay, I think I -

Ripppp. The bag goes. Cathy grabs the falling items, including the flowers. Sikes mumbles another profanity, grapples with his door keys.

INT. SIKES' APARTMENT - NIGHT - SIKES

enters and rubs at a light switch with his shoulder.

CATHY
Why don't you let me-

SIKES
No, it's... okay.

He rubs twice more and the light goes on. Cathy smiles.

CATHY
Very independent.

SIKES
Story of my life.

CATHY
(re her burden)
In the kitchen?

SIKES
Don't move.

CATHY
But I'm losing -

SIKES
Don't move, dammit!

She frowns, stares at him as he looks very carefully at a table top, then sets down his armload of stuff. She catches a glimpse of his shoulder holster and pistol. Gets a trifle uneasy...

CATHY
...Are you a cop?

He nods, scrutinizing the apartment quickly, his antenna up.

CATHY
What is it? Something wrong?

Ignoring her, he pulls out a pen and uses it to accurately measure where some knick-knacks are placed on a shelf, and the specific inch that a drawer is open.

CATHY
Are you going to be really upset when I drop this?

He sees that a package is slipping from her grasp. Takes it.

CATHY
Can I put the rest in the -

SIKES
Just a second.

He drops to his hands and knees looking carefully at the lower door frame.

CATHY
Are all cops this careful when they come home?

CLOSER ANGLE

as his fingers run along an almost invisible thread that is strung across the doorway.

CATHY
Booby trap?

SIKES
Just to let me know if someone'd been here.

CATHY
You expecting somebody special, or do you always...

Sikes gives her a withering look.

CATHY
Can I go in there now?

He nods. she goes into the kitchen, while he continues combing his flat for the slightest inconsistency.

CATHY (O.S.)
Have a vase?

SIKES
No. I mean yes, but I'm taking them to somebody tonight.

CATHY (O.S.)
Lucky girl.

SIKES
Married girl.

CATHY
(returning from kitchen)
Even luckier to still get flowers.
(re a photo)
That your daughter?

SIKES
Yeah.

CATHY
Then you're lucky, too. Oh, I'm Cathy Frankel. 5-D.

SIKES
(still checking things)
Huh? Oh. Matt Sikes.
(off her smile)
Yeah, I know. In your language Sikes means excrement and cranium.

CATHY
Well, it could be worse.
(seeing his train layout)
Oh, that's terrific. You build it?

SIKES
I'm building it. For about a year.

CATHY
It's beautiful. ...Is that semaphore facing the right way?

SIKES
(twisting it gruffly)
I'm still working on it. What, are you an engineer?

CATHY
(a chuckle)
Biochemist.

SIKES
That's nice. Well, look, thanks for the help, y'know.

CATHY
Sure. But don't keep me in suspense: do you think anyone was here?

SIKES
(yes, but no proof)
He woulda been a real pro.

CATHY
Do you smoke cigars?

SIKES
No.

CATHY
Been around anybody today who smoked one?

SIKES
No... what're you -

CATHY
Then somebody was in here.

SIKES
Yeah, your seasoned professional always smokes a cigar while he searches a -

CATHY
(shrugs)
Smokers get it in their clothes. Don't even realize it.

SIKES
(patronizingly)
And you can smell it. Even after they're gone.

CATHY
(positively)
Yep. Not have much hair, but a great nose. - Listen, whenever your bag's ripping give me a yell.

She smiles, exits. A beat. Sikes grins in spite of himself. Then moves to the train set. He lifts up the mountain - revealing Tuggs' file box. Safe. Be breathes a sigh, then looks around - sniffs the air, warily. Chews his lip.


EXT. GEORGE'S ROUSE - NIGHT - SIKES

walks to the front door. From a passing car someone shouts, "SLAG-LOVER!" - Sikes lets it roll off. Is about to ring when the door is opened by Emily.

EMILY
I was on a stake out, watching for you.

SIKES
Well, then you're a good cop.

SUSAN
(appears)
One in the family's enough. C'mon in, Mr. Sikes.

SIKES
Matt.

SUSAN
(re the flowers)
Thanks. - And thanks for yesterday. What you did for Emmy. - Emily, put 'em in some water.

SIKES
How's it goin' for her?

SUSAN
Not great, but at least you got her in the door.

SIKES
No big deal.

SUSAN
Yes it was.

Their eyes hold a moment, then Sikes looks away.

SIKES
Look, I don't want you to go to any trouble for dinner. Why don't I just -

SUSAN
It's no trouble. George is out back right now - killing the beaver.
(off his look)
Just a joke. I wouldn't do that to you.

SIKES
You really do eat stuff like that, though? You're bodies don't process cooked food?

SUSAN
Right. But we buy ours packaged just like you do.

SIKES
Yeah, I've seen it in the stores. - Next to the sushi.

GEORGE
(entering)
Any luck on the deliveryman?

SIKES
Nobody home at the address I took. What about yours?

GEORGE
The bus terminal.

SIKES
Swell.

GEORGE
Oh, I thought you'd want to know who owned that abandoned plant we stopped at: Branco Industries.
(off Sikes frown)
Mean something?

SIKES
Branco's owned by a lowlife named Jacob Fletcher. Big Mafia-type we've been trying to nail for years .

Sikes & George look at each other, thoughtfully.

SUSAN
You guys want to put your guns on?

SIKES
Sorry. No more shop talk.

GEORGE
How 'bout football?

And they actually share a smile.

INT. GEORGE & SUSAN'S DINING ROOM - A SHORT TIME LATER

Sikes is hanging up a phone, walks toward the table.

SIKES
Okay I told him: Cowboys minus three points.

GEORGE
Just an educated guess.

SIKES
I do like your guesses.
(noticing a sculpture)
Whoa - that's nice.

GEORGE
(a secret smile)
You really think so?

SIKES
Yeah. Reminds me of that French guy...

GEORGE
Rodin?

SIKES
Yeah.

GEORGE
What'd I tell you, Sus?
(she waves him off)
Susan did it.

SIKES
No kidding? That's great work.

SUSAN
(a touch embarrassed)
Thanks.

Sikes settles at the table.

EMILY
What about Buck, momma?

SUSAN
We'll start without him. For a change. ...George?

George VOCALIZES a chant-like phrase in their native tongue as he, Susan and Emily all look up toward the ceiling. Each of them touches their fingertips to their chest, just below the breasts on either side - then right fingertips to left side, and left fingertips to right.

Bowing their heads forward they close their eyes, touch their fingertips to their temples. There is a pause. Sikes watches. Then they open their eyes and smile.

SUSAN
Salad, Matt?

SIKES
Sure, thanks. ...What exactly was
that?

EMILY
Can I tell?
(off George's nod)
It's our remembrance of Andarko and Celine. A male and female who lived eons ago and sacrificed themselves to save millions. We try to live by their example.
(demonstrating)
We touch our fingers to each of our two hearts, then reverse them to show that the male and female are interchangeable. We touch our heads to bring their purity and goodness within us.

A door CLOSES off camera.

SUSAN
And speaking of purity and goodness...

BUCK
(shuffles in)
{Sorry I'm late.}

GEORGE
English, please Buck. This is the man I work with, Matthew Sikes.

BUCK
Yeah, hi. ...No meat?

SUSAN
Not tonight. You'll survive.

GEORGE
We invited Matt tonight because of how he stood up for Emily yesterday... and to also thank him for how kind he's been to me since we started working togeth-

BUCK
{Pardon me while I go puke.}

Be leaves disgustedly, startling everyone. George rises...

GEORGE
Excuse me. Sus, tell Matt about your classes at S.C.
(exiting)

SUSAN
Don't you just love teen-agers?

SIKES
Yeah. Most of 'em act like me. - You studying sculpture at S.C.?

SUSAN
Yes. And English lit.

EMILY
And astronomy and architecture. She's got more homework than me.

SUSAN
Emmy...

SIKES
A Renaissance woman!

SUSAN
An undecided woman.

SIKES
With a proud daughter.

He winks at Emily, who winks back, awkwardly, charmingly, as kids do.

INT. BUCK'S ROOM

dark and messy, with an edge. A couple of disturbing ICONS. He's THRUMMING on a curious INSTRUMENT that's part guitar and part drum as George enters.

GEORGE
What was the reason for that?

BUCK
{I can't stand to-}

GEORGE
English, dammit!

BUCK
- Watch you suck up to him like that. You're such a sell-out. Buying into all this yuppie -

GEORGE
It's better than being slaves.

BUCK
(a smug laugh)
We still are slaves! - You know how much smarter we are than terts?

GEORGE
Yes.

BUCK
Then why stroke 'em?

GEORGE
To be more accepted. - We're different, Buck. It's written all over us. There's a natural resentment against us. So we have to be better, more patient - just to be accepted as even equal. We have to adapt.

BUCK
It's a lotta crap. We should be able to be what we are, man. Without the brown-nosing.

GEORGE
It takes time, Buck. But look at the progress already. We're in a better neighborhood-

BUCK
Where half the people won't talk to us.

GEORGE
Change happens slowly. But some Newcomers are already crossing - over. Because of their skill or intelligence. Look at Dr. Fallon at Cal Tech, or Chuck Winslow who just signed with the Dodgers.

BUCK
Just P.R., man.

GEORGE
No, it's because he's a great hitter. And how 'bout Martine Bennett on the L.A. city council?

BUCK
Right. But does she get a vote?

GEORGE
If Proposition 16 passes she will - we all will.

BUCK
Good luck. you seen the opinion polls?

GEORGE
Yes. There's almost a fifty-fifty chance. A lot of humans want us to vote.

BUCK
And a lot of them don't.

GEORGE
It could go either way, you're right - but that means that almost half of the people are on our side.

BUCK
Well I haven't met any of 'em.

GEORGE
Maybe you're not looking in the right places. ...C'mon and have dinner with us, will you?

BUCK
I'm really not hungry.

He thrums sullenly on his instrument. George sighs.


INT. A SHADOWY ROOM - NIGHT - THE FACE OF THE DEAD VAGRANT

Two NEWCOMERS dressed in surgical gowns and masks lean over the body, carefully inspecting the sores, testing samples. The atmosphere is very tense.

THE NEWCOMER SURGEON
{It's much worse than I thought.}

THE OTHER NEWCOMER
{What do we do?}

THE NEWCOMER SURGEON
{I don't know. ...Pray?}

He wipes his brow. Looks at the other surgeon. - Then BLACK.


ACT THREE

INT. GEORGE & SUSAN'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

George lies on his stomach on their bed, only a sheet covering the lower part of his body. Susan is in the bathroom.

SUSAN (O.S.)
Mostly it's because he's a teen-ager.

GEORGE
...Maybe.

SUSAN (O.S.)
Why don't we just tell him it's not working out, and to please come back when he's grown.

GEORGE
(a smirk)
Now that's an idea.

SUSAN (O.S.)
(a pause)
Why do you think that factory smelled like our spacecraft?

GEORGE
I don't know.

SUSAN (O.S.)
Was Matt impressed that you could smell something he couldn't?

GEORGE
More annoyed, I think. He spends a lot of time annoyed.

SUSAN (O.S.)
Diane - the woman who brought us that plant I'm trying not to kill - I saw her in the market and she was amazed that I could smell and see the pesticides on the produce. Made me promise to pick out all her fruit from now on.

She comes out wearing a thin nightie. The light from the bathroom behind her outlines her body underneath. Alien or not, she looks like someone you'd went to have pick out your fruit.

SUSAN
The produce manager was pretty annoyed with Me. Heard him whisper I had a head like an over-ripe crenshaw melon. - I don't think they realize how acute our senses are.

GEORGE
No, they don't. - Thanks for having Matt over.

SUSAN
(settling beside him)
No problem.

GEORGE
You made him very comfortable.

SUSAN
(stroking his back)
Would you like me to make you comfortable?

GEORGE
Wellll...

SUSAN
(mimicking)
Wellll... I saw you lying here with your back exposed... waiting for a little hummer...

She leans down, touches her lips just below his shoulder blade, and HUMS a long note. George's body relaxes with a wave of warm sexuality. - Susan moves her lips slightly and HUMS a slightly lower, longer note. George closes his eyes and breathes deeply.

He reaches around and MASSAGES a spot on the back of her knee - and Susan draws a breath of pure sexual pleasure.

SUSAN
Oooo... yes...

She HUMS on his back again, getting into it. Until he chuckles...

SUSAN
...I beg your pardon...?

GEORGE
I'm sorry I was just thinking...you know in their movies, particularly that X-Rated video we rented, how humorous we find some of their foreplay rituals...

SUSAN
Mmmm hmmm...

She HUMS on his back again, clearly getting a rise out of him. Her body moves sensually...

SUSAN
Well,...you know what they say...
(humming on him again)

GEORGE
(a breathless whisper)
...What do they... say...?

SUSAN
{Different strokes for different folks.}

GEORGE
(embracing her)
{ ...Is that what they say...}

SUSAN
Mmmmmmmm....

He increases the stimulation behind her knee, her body arches with ecstatic pleasure...


EXT. A WEATHERED BILLBOARD FOR THE UNITED WAY - DAY

features the smiling face of a Newcomer. A smaller poster has been stuck on it reading, Keep America Pure - Vote NO on 16." The camera tilts down to find Sikes & George getting out of their car.

SIKES
Fifty bucks I lost on the Cowboys, man.

GEORGE
Can't factor the turnovers, Matt. Nobody's perfect.

A young Latino comes out the front door of an apartment. Senses cops. Ducks back in.

SIKES
Hey! You! - Halt!

Sikes bolts inside, chasing the guy up the stairs.

THE NEXT LANDING - THE LATINO

runs for all he's worth. Sikes pumps up the steps behind.

EXT. THE ROOF - THE LATINO

explodes out of a door and runs frantically across the roof to a fire escape. He scrambles downward with Sikes in hot pursuit. - He swings over the bottom rail, drops to the alley - and face to face with George's gun.

GEORGE
Freeze. - Sands on the wall.

Sikes drops beside him, breathing very hard. And annoyed.

SIKES
You're... s'posed... t'back me... up.

GEORGE
I did. Anticipated his exit. He's in custody.

SIKES
Yeah, but...what if I'd ...needed you...inside?

GEORGE
I would've come right in.

SIKES
That's not the damn point!

GEORGE
Matt, I'm sorry you did so much running and I didn't. - And I'm sorry the Cowboys lost.

Sikes sublimates angrily, spinning the Latino around.

SIKES
Alright where's the stiff?

THE LATINO
Ne habla Anglis.

SIKES
(roughing him)
Don't gimme that Crap!

THE LATINO
Okay, okay. But I don't know what you're talking about!

GEORGE
We already have your partner.

SIKES
(glancing at George)
Yeah. Yeah. And he's sayin' it was all your idea.

THE LATINO
No way, man! - Guy paid us both!

SIKES
What guy?

THE LATINO
(re George)
One of them, man.

GEORGE
A Newcomer? Paid you? Would you recognize him?

THE LATINO
C'mon, man, they all look alike.

SIKES
Why'd he want it?
(off his shrug)
You clubbed the reporter? Huh!?

THE LATINO
No!

GEORGE
He's telling the truth.
(off Sikes look)
He's right handed. The angle of the blow on Mr. Burns most probably came from a left hand.

THE LATINO
It was a slag hit him, man.

SIKES
The one who paid you?

THE LATINO
Naw, different. Smaller.

GEORGE
And where's the body?

THE LATINO
Hey, C'mon man, you gimme a break, huh? I I tell you?

SIKES
Sure. And I'll throw you off the roof if you don't.

GEORGE
Oh please, Matt! No! I covered for you last time, but -

THE LATINO
(quickly)
Figueroa and fifth! Vacant lot!

Sikes & George smile.


INT. EMILY'S CLASSROOM - DAY - JILL

scrunches her face, frustrated with a math problem. Looks at Emily who is breezing along. Jill whispers tentatively.

JILL
...I don't get it.

EMILY
(looks up, smiles)
Show me.

JILL
Here, see...

EMILY
Well, y'multiply those two.

JILL
Okay, twenty one, but where-

EMILY
Carry the two up to there. And just hold it. Now multiply these - six - and add-

JILL
The two. - Eight!

EMILY
Yeah.

JILL
Thanks. Wow, you're in the blue book already?

Emily nods. Mark wheels past.

MARK
Talk to spongeheads and your hair'll fall out.

JILL
Shut up, Mark. - He's a jerk. Hey, thanks for the help.

EMILY
Sure.

Jill returns to her desk, glances back to see Emily touching the back of her smooth head. Then Emily feels Jill's eyes, they share a glance. Then Emily goes back to work. But Jill keeps looking at her. Pondering something.


EXT. THE RATTY VACANT LOT - DAY - GEORGE

moves toward their car from across the lot. The Latino is locked in the back seat. Sikes leans on the car, eyeing George as he finishes a radio call...

SIKES
...Yeah. Ten-four.

GEORGE
Nothing over here either.

SIKES
Y'know, y'played it real smooth back there. Fell right in with my patter - like Tuggs used to. Felt good. We got some nice stuff outta him.

GEORGE
(smiles)
I appreciate the compliment.

SIKES
Yeah, but there's somethin' I gotta talk t'you about: Dobbs just said you paid him the fifty I owed for the Cowboys.

GEORGE
(a shrug)
I felt responsible.

SIKES
Yeah, well you didn't put a gun t'my head, did ya? - I lost - I pay, okay?

GEORGE
Sure.

SIKES
(studying him)
You're a funny guy, George.

GEORGE
D'you really think so? I'm trying to improve my sense of humor.

SIKES
No, no, what I meant was -

GEORGE
Humor is always the hardest thing to translate, y'know? - I did hear a new joke, though.

SIKES
...Oh yeah?

GEORGE
(carefully remembering)
A man came up to me and asked, Which way is it to Carnegie Hall?" - And I said, "Practice!"

George smiles, chuckles. Sikes stares at him.

GEORGE
"Practice!" Are you getting it?

SIKES
Yeah. Yeah. It's close, George, real close. ...It might be a smidge more effective, though, if y'say "How do you get to Carnegie Hall."

GEORGE
(weighing it)
Oh. "How do you get to - "

SIKES
There y'go. Keep working on it, you'll be ready t'go on the road real soon.

RADIO VOICE
Unit seven, request for a detective unit. 2211 Fourth.

SIKES
Ten-four. ...Hey. Wanna drive?

GEORGE
(surprised, smiles)
Sure. ...Thanks, Matt.
(getting in)
...Can I ask you a personal question?

SIKES
What?

GEORGE
When can I expect you t'give me the fifty?

SIKES
That's too personal.

GEORGE
(a smirk)
I was afraid of that.


EXT/INT. BROKEN-DOWN WAREHOUSE (FROM SCENE ONE) - DAY

where the Vagrant's body had been found. Buck is leading in a couple of older-, tougher-looking NEWCOMER YOUTHS.

BUCK
{I thought it'd be a good place to set up a hangout.}

SVABO
{Awright, man, this is cool!}
(to Blentu)
{Told ya he was a smart guy!}

BLENTU
{Yeah! Y'did good, buddy boy!}
(checking the place out)
{We can hook up a TV and everything. Get some booze!}

SVABO
{And let him hang with us, huh?}

Blentu nods. Buck's very pleased with their praise.

THE STREET OUTSIDE - A BLACK YOUTH

can see Buck and his pals moving inside the warehouse. He's not pleased.


EXT. SOUTH FOURTH STREET - THE FRINGES OF SLAGTOWN - DAY

Sikes & George are moving toward Officer Puente.

GEORGE
But if Tuggs suspected that he'd come across something that was unlawful going on in that plant that Fletcher owned, why didn't he tell you?

SIKES
I dunno. Maybe he didn't have time. Or -

PUENTE
I thought it looked kinda peculiar so I left it where we found it. - There it is. Whaddaya make of it?

Lying in a rancid corner of an alley is something like a split-open sheath about a foot long. They kneel nearby.

SIKES
Beats the hell outta me.

GEORGE
It looks like skin.

SIKES
Huh? Human skin?

GEORGE
(looking closer)
No. Skin from one of us.

SIKES
...What?!


EXT. SIKES' STREET - NIGHT - TWO WHITE MEN, ONE BLACK

are coming out of a bar, a little juiced and laughing.

FIRST ROWDY
Yeah! We got that Ol' slag good!

SECOND ROWDY
Didn't we, though! Y'shoulda seen it, man - Johnny threw a little salt water on this slag and he started to fizz! Salt water burns 'em like acid!

FIRST ROWDY
He musta run all the way back to Slagtown!

They hoot and laugh, then one sees something, nudges the others.

DOWN THE BLOCK - CATHY

is closing and locking her car door. she turns and sees the rednecks crossing toward her, grinning.

FIRST ROWDY
Well lookie here.

SECOND ROWDY
Must be a mirage. Not s'posed to be no slags 'round here.

Cathy tries to move toward her building, but is cut off.

CATHY
Excuse me.

FIRST ROWDY
Ain't no excuse for ya.

CATHY
That's my building, would you-

SECOND ROWDY
That's your mistake is what it is.

FIRST ROWDY
Pretty fancy clothes, for a slag.

CATHY
(venomous)
Don't. You. Touch me.

SECOND ROWDY
He just wants t'be neighborly.

FIRST ROWDY :
That's right. Get t'know ya. ...Real good.

He starts to maul her - and she brings up her knee hard in his groin - SHOUTING ANGRILY to a passing car -

CATHY
Help me!

The car keeps going, the third man tries to muzzle her - but she sinks her teeth deep into his hand! He YELLS!

SECOND ROWDY
You little slag bitch!

He backhands her, spinning her against the car - but Cathy comes right back and nails him with a powerful roundhouse left. She breaks away, stumbles, scrapes her knee. The first man grabs a handful of her shirt - rips it violently, exposing her back, but she kicks at him, keeps going.

She runs around a corner and right into - Sikes.

CATHY
No! Let me -

SIKES
Hey. Hey! What's wrong!

CATHY
Three men - they -

come barreling around the corner - into Sikes' FIST. He DROPS the first rowdy, pulls his gun.

SIKES
On the ground. Face down.

FIRST ROWDY
Hey, Sikes? - It's me, Johnny. C'mon man, we were just -

SIKES
Doing a little slag-bashing? On the ground! - Cathy, dial 911 on that phone.

SECOND ROWDY
"Cathy?" - When'd you turn into a slag-lover, Sikes?

Sikes glares at him.


INT. CATHY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT - SIKES

is helping the disheveled Cathy into her Cluttered place.

SIKES
Well, I'm glad to see you're no model o'neatness either.

CATHY
(re her torn clothes)
Particularly at present.

SIKES
How y'doin'?

CATHY
I'm shakier mow. I knew there were people like them around, but it was hard to believe.

SIKES
Why?

CATHY
Down at the Med Center where I work, everybody gets along great. Human or Newcomer doesn't matter. You're valued for what's in your head - not what shape it is.
(moving to the bedroom)
- Listen, there's some sodas in the fridge. Help yourself.

SIKES
No, that's okay I'll...

She is taking off her clothes in the bedroom, unaware that a configuration of mirrors is giving Sikes an INTIMATE VIEW.

SIKES
...Maybe just... have...

CATHY
Grab me a diet something, huh? - How'd you get to be a cop?

SIKES
(still peeking)
Spent so much time in jail as a kid it seemed like home.

CATHY
Seriously?

He cranes his neck slightly, gets an even more tantalizing glimpse of her semi-nude body. Apart from the strange speckling that extends down her back, she looks very inviting.

SIKES
...Yeah. Ran with a gang. This one cop got tireda busting me, got me into the Police Athletic League. "Channeled my antisocial aggressiveness into sports."

CATHY
So you're not anti-social anymore?

SIKES
Just to my ex-wife.

CATHY
Been divorced long?

SIKES
'Bout a year...

CATHY
Your idea or hers?

SIKES
(hers)
...Mine. It was time, y'know. Got married too young. Our daughter was born twenty minutes later. Sorta missed our adolescence...

She's nearly dressed. Sikes breaks away. Opens the fridge.

SIKES
Thank God. No dead raccoons or -

CATHY
No, I'm a herbivore.
(off his look)
Vegetarian.

SIKES
With good ears. - What's this?

She takes out a soda as he examines a geometric object.

CATHY
You'd call it something like a focal point. Part of my religion.

SIKES
(knowledgeably)
Oh yeah, ...Andarko and Celine.

CATHY
You know about the Celinists? - No, mine's different, you'd say more "Eastern." Internal.

SIKES
Y'mean you all have different religions? - 'Course. Why not?
(sipping a soda)
God, weird as it is for us to have you here, it must be really strange for you. Were you born on the ship, too?

CATHY
We all were.

SIKES
Ever notice any particular smell in the air?

CATHY
(glancing at him)
What do you mean?

SIKES
I dunno. Just anything different from ordinary air? With that spectacular nose of yours?

CATHY
(carefully?)
Well... I did notice the air was different once we were outside, but I think it was just the smog. ...Why do you ask?!

SIKES
...Just curious.
(sipping his soda)
Y'know, what's always been the most peculiar to me is... I mean here's this ship with a quarter million slaves, right? - And it never shows up where it's supposed to. I mean, didn't anybody notice?

CATHY
You'd think so, wouldn't you?

SIKES
Damn right. And aren't they ever gonna come looking?

CATHY
...Maybe they will.

Her eyes have grown distant. Sikes watches her.


INT. THE POLICE HOLDING TANK - NIGHT - THE LATINO

is on the pay phone, scratching his arm, speaking in Spanish:

THE LATINO
Ysabel? - It's Tito. Listen, where they holding Marcos? I gotta- What?! - Yeah yeah put him on.

INT. A CORNER OF AN EAST L.A. APARTMENT - NIGHT - INTERCUT

A burly Latino (MARCOS) takes the phone from a woman.

MARCOS
Yeah?

TITO
They told me they busted you, man!

MARCOS
No way.

TITO
(pissed)
Aw, those suckers! - You better watch out, they know we took the stiff.
(scratching his arm)

MARCOS!
You tell 'em where we dumped it?

TITO
Yeah, but it was gone. - Look, I need some bail money, man.

MARCOS
Yeah, yeah, don't panic. I'll call Joe.

Marcos has turned and is rubbing a red RASH on his cheek.

TITO
Well hurry up, man, they got me in the slam with a bunch o'rotten slags.

Tito hangs up. Scratches his arm again. Looks down at it, there is a red RASH on it, just like Marcos. But Tito has more important things to worry about. ...So he thinks.

ACT FOUR

INT. THE POLICE STATION - DAY - ALBERT THE JANITOR

is wheeling along a service cart with fire extinguishers. He pauses where an old one is mounted on the wall, removes it and goes to work unscrewing the mount. Grazer passes by.

GRAZER
What's going down, Lightnin'?

ALBERT
Re-replacing the C02 fire
extinguishers, Captain Grazer.

GRAZER
Oh yeah, you guys got a problem with C02, doncha?

ALBERT
Just when it's c-concentrated.

Sikes & George pass by, the camera follows...

SIKES !
Yeah, slavery. That's what most of the file is about. I haven't gotten through it all yet, there's a mountain of stuff. Tuggs' great-grandfather was a slave. He was always studying about it.

GEORGE
So when our slave ship landed here it gave him a first hand opportunity.

SIKES
I guess so - but how does that tie to that abandoned plant in his notes? And if he was onto something...

GEORGE
(pondering)
How exactly did he die?

SIKES
Shoot out. I told you.

(As Sikes describes the following, we'll see pieces of it in FLASHBACK using scenes from the motion picture.)

SIKES
We spotted a robbery going down. They offed a shopkeeper, then opened up on us. He ducked behind a car. Pulled a guy out of it.

MAN IN CAR
Hey, what's happening

TUGGS
Hi there sir, how are you? Y'mind steppin' out here for a second, we got a bit of trouble. ...Thank
ya.

SIKES
Then the sl- The Newcomer inside switched artillery.

The powerful rifle BLOWS a hole right through the car next to a startled Tuggs! He backs along the car - as additional shells BLAST through.

SIKES
I was pinned. Couldn't cover him. Some partner, huh?

GEORGE
I'm sure you did the best you could.

SIKES
(not convinced)
...Yeah. Anyway, Old Tuggs ran out of cover - he was leaning back against the car and the last shell... went right through him.

GEORGE
Awful. Did you actually see it?

SIKES
No. By the time I got to him it was over.

GEORGE
I'm really sorry.

SIKES
Yeah.

GEORGE
And the autopsy showed he died from that wound?

SIKES
What?

GEORGE
Was there an autopsy?

SIKES
(flaring)
He had a three inch hole in his chests Y'think he died from slipping on a banana peel?

A CRASH off camera. They look over to see that

ALBERT

has just dropped one of the heavy C02 extinguishers which tips over and lands on Dobbs' foot! He yelps! Hops back falling over a chair.

DOBBS
You stupid - ahhg!

ALBERT
Oh! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!

Albert grabs for the extinguisher - the wrong way - it fires a cloud of C02 right into his face. His eyes roll back and he falls flat out cold behind a desk.

The Forensics Doctor, Lee, walks right through the midst of the tangle as if nothing were happening. Goes to Sikes.

LEE
That stuff you found was slag skin, alright. My trusty assistant, Stepn' Fetchit, verified it himself.

SIKES
How about the slimy stuff from the laundry truck.

LEE
Weird crap. We're working on it.

GEORGE
Did you do an autopsy on Sergeant Tuggles?

LEE
(surprised, annoyed)
- What?

GRAZER
Hey - gotta roll on a 602.
(to Lee)
They want you there, too.


EXT. GEORGE'S STREET - DAY - SUSAN

is jogging, wearing a lived-in sweat suit. She's been at it a while, and tiring, but determined. Then ahead of her she sees a FEMALE NEWCOMER, walking the same direction. Unusual for this neighborhood. Her clothes are poor, but clean. Susan reaches her just as the female starts up a walk toward a house.

SUSAN
Hiya.

THE FEMALE
...Hello.

SUSAN
Nice t'see another shiny head. I Didn't know anybody lived around here but us.

THE FEMALE
You live near here?

SUSAN
Three houses up on the right.

THE FEMALE
Oh, well, I don't. I just-

ANOTHER WOMAN'S VOICE
Miranda?

They look up to see the fifty-ish HOMEOWNER. Red hair and clothes are trendy but overdone.

TEE HOMEOWNER
Get on up here, girl. I suppose you're going to tell me the bus was late again.

THE FEMALE
Yes, maam it-

THE HOMEOWNER
Never mind, just get on in here and get to work. And what'd I tell you about not bringing your friends along-
(to Susan)
You get along, missy. You're probably late for your job, too.

The homeowner turns abruptly and hustles her Newcomer maid inside. Susan stares after them, amazed, amused, and pissed.


EXT. A STREET ON THE GRITTY EDGE OF SLAGTOWN - DAY

Sikes and George are moving from their car past other black and whites toward an alley that's been cordoned off.

SIKES
What we got?

PUENTE
Another lovely.

She leads them to the body of an old BAG WOMAN. Her skin is splotched with UGLY SORES. Lee is kneeling nearby.

SIKES
Like the vagrant.

GEORGE
No, it doesn't look the same. What's that smell?

LEE
Formic acid. - He's right. These aren't infectious sores like that bum had. These are acid burns. That's what killed her.

SIKES
I never heard of formic acid.

GEORGE
Formic... Latin for "ant?"

LEE
(a surprised glance)
Yeah. It's found in ants... and a few other insects. Also used industrially. Formica.

SIKES
Looks like somebody threw the whole kitchen counter at her.

GEORGE
Anybody see anything?

PUENTE
(rolling her eyes)
Oh yeah.

TWO STREET PEOPLE STANDING NEARBY

Reporter Burns glides into the b.g. quietly with his camera.

FIRST STREETPERSON
(wide-eyed)
I only seen bits and pieces of it in the shadows, but it was like something out of a nightmare.

SIKES
What?

FIRST STREETPERSON
Black. Part shiny. 'Bout seven or eight feet tall. With these pincher kinda things on its face. - With six arms and -

SIKES
Aw, c'mon-

SECOND STREETPERSON
It did not have six arms!

SIKES
Thank you. Now -

SECOND STREETPERSON
It only had four.

A pause. Sikes stares at the person. In the b.g., Burns reacts' also.

SECOND STREETPERSON
And it wasn't all shiny either. Parts of it seemed sort of bristly-like.

Sikes stares at this one a moment, then sighs. Speaks loudly:

SIKES .
Alright, let's fan out. Cover this whole area inch by inch. Puente, get a couple more units in here.


INT. THE BROKEN DOWN WAREHOUSE - DAY - BUCK

is working on the back of a TV. His gang buddies are sprawled around, drinking sour milk.

BUCK
{Anything?}

SVABO
{I think y'got it.}
(twisting a dial)
(Yeah, check it out!}

ANGLE ON THE TV - GERALDO RIVERA

is interviewing several people, including THE WOMAN PURIST who was inciting the mob at Emily's school.

THE PURIST
There's a real danger, I'm telling you!

GERALDO
Yes, you've said that again and again, Mrs. Brett, but if you'll forgive me it sounds a little hysterical. What I-

A MAN (PURIST LEADER)
It's not hysterical. What we Purists stand for is very simple - and very wholesome: we don't want our kids polluted by their kind.

GERALDO
And you'll use force if necessary?

THE PURIST LEADER
We are committed to using whatever means necessary.

Audience REACTION, both pro and con, is heard. Someone shouts, "You ought to be committed." Geraldo turns to another MAN who sits beside a distinguished NEWCOMER.

GERALDO
Alright, but Dr. Burwitz, is there any sort of medical basis for Mrs. Brett's claim that the Newcomers could be carrying a virus that makes AIDS look like chicken pox?

DR. HURWITZ
Well... We have no evidence that such a virus exists.

GERALDO
But it could exist?

DR. HURWITZ
Well, there were those of us who argued that the quarantine period may not have been sufficiently long enough to thoroughly isolate extraterrestrial bacteria, but-

GERALDO
So such a virus could exist.

THE PURIST LEADER
And that's exactly why we never should have let the damned aliens outs - And now this elitist conspiracy to give them the vote.

THE DISTINGUISHED NEWCOMER
Can we please stick to the subject we agreed on -

THE PURIST LEADER
(flaring)
Don't you tell me what to stick to, you filthy slag!

THE NEWCOMER
(rising to leave)
Excuse me...

THE PURIST LEADER
(jumping up)
Just sit the hell back down there, boy - we want some straight answers and we want-

The Newcomer struggles to rise. The Purist Leader grapples with him. Geraldo intervenes. The audience REACTS wildly!

BLENTU
{Shut up, jerk.}

He flips the channel. A BASKETBALL GAME comes on. The camera follows two NEWCOMER PLAYERS. They are DAZZLING.

ANNOUNCER
And once again the two newest additions to the Bruins proved that their skills could leave their opponents in the dust. Chip Weston and Nicholas Nickleby led their team to a staggering 113 to 75 upset over Loyola. g Prompting Coach Jim Harrick to quip that other teams oughta be allowed to play with seven men against UCLA.

The crowd, which includes several Newcomers is cheering wildly, carrying the Newcomer heroes on their shoulders. Even Buck and some of the toughs are pleased, "Alright! Show the terts! Way to go!" etc. - Until Svabo and Blentu SMIRK.

BLENTU
{Stupid sellouts.}

SVABO
(Yeah.}

Buck tries to adopt their attitude. Nods. Wants to fit in.

BUCK
{...Yeah.}

EXT. THE WAREHOUSE - ACROSS THE STREET - TWO BLACK YOUTHS

peer from an alley. One is the young tough who had seen Buck and company yesterday. He is pointing out to the other where! Buck's gang has taken up residence. - The youths look vengeful.


INT. EMILY'S CLASSROOM - DAY - EMILY & JILL

are alone in the room. The others are playing outside.

JILL
I got it out of the stuff we use for the drama club. I thought it might make you feel... well...

She pulls a wig out of her desk. It's brown and a little It tattered. Emily looks at it.

EMILY
I'm not sure.

JILL
Oh, go on and try it.

EMILY
How do you put it -

JILL
Here, like this. That's it. No, more around this way...

EMILY
Oww, wait...that hurts. Here...

She bends her head down and fidgets with it a moment, then rises up. The wig is askew and doesn't really fit her head.

EMILY
What do you think?

JILL
Well...
(starting to giggle)

MARS (O.S.)
I think it's hysterical

Emily looks toward the door where a bunch of the kids have started coming in. They all shriek with LAUGHTER as they see her. Emily is mortified. She looks at Jill, who can't suppress her own GIGGLE.

Emily's eyes well with angry tears. She pulls the wig off and throws it in Jill's face - then runs out the back door.


EXT. THE EDGE OF SLAGTOWN - DAY - OFFICER PUENTE

PUENTE
Here! Over here!

Sikes & George and a few others come to her, peer down into some rubble. Burns joins them. Puente is very nervous.

PUENTE
What the hell by that?

Sikes & George move slowly down closer to what appears to be part of a leg - but hollow. George uses a stick to lift aside some trash paper revealing

THE SKIN OF A NEWCOMER

Dried out, husk-like, as if it has been SHED like a snakeskin. He indicates a MOIST TRAIL that stretches away.

SIKES
Look at that... It looks like something came outta the skin and dragged itself away. ...What the hell happened here? ...George?

George seems mesmerized. Sikes is getting edgy.

SIKES
George? This looks like some kinda damned metamorphosis! What's going on? - George!?

GEORGE
I... don't know what to say. I've never seen... anything...

SIKES
You haven't? You haven't!? Look at that Skin! - It's one of you! - or it was. - What was inside of it, George?

GEORGE
I don't know, Matt, I-

SIKES
(grabbing his arm)
Level with me, dammit! What was inside of it? Is it inside all the Newcomers?

George is silent. Sikes is suddenly chilled. Speaks low...

SIKES
Good God... Is the same thing inside of you?
(no answer)
Is it?!

GEORGE
(very quietly)
...How could it be?

SIKES
I don't knows You tell me, dammit!

GEORGE
Matt...

SIKES
(exploding)
Tell me, you damned slag, or I'll-

He's shaking George violently, but George stares at him, stoically. Sikes snarls, shoves him down and storms off. Burns is CLICKING OFF some shots of the shed skin.


INT. GEORGE'S HOUSE - SUSAN'S MAKESHIFT ART ROOM - NIGHT

Susan has sculpted the face of the pissy Homeowner woman she encountered earlier. It's an excellent likeness. Susan looks at it a moment, then PUNCHES her fist hard into it. - Now she feels better.

George has entered through the back door. Susan is still looking at the bust, she doesn't see that George is darkly preoccupied.

SUSAN
Hi, honey... Listen, we've gotta talk. Emmy had a real rough day and Buck's school called. ...He's never been there.

George stops. Looks at her. Flares, heads out of the kitchen.

SUSAN
George. Wait. I want us to do it together. - George!

INT. BUCK'S ROOM - BUCK

is thrumming on his instrument, making an interesting rhythm, when George steamrolls in fiercely and grabs him - scaring the living shit out of him.

BUCK
What!! What, dad!! wait!!

George SLAMS him up against the walls Bellows at him -

GEORGE
- Listen you little ingrate slag, I've worked my ass off so you can have a better life and won't have! to live like a damn slave - and I'll be damned if I'm gonna let you piss away your Chances! - I catch you ditching any more school - or catch you running with those smartass hoods, I'll have your head in a buckets - Got that?! - You GOT THAT!?

BUCK
(mumbling angrily)
...Yeah... yeah...

George slings him to the floor and stands glowering. Buck starts to say something. Stops.

GEORGE
(snapping)
- What.

BUCK
You don't want to hear it.

GEORGE
You got something to say, say it.

BUCK
I think you're just roasting me cause of the crap you eat at your jobs

GEORGE
(bristling)
I'm roasting you cause you're turning into a little screw-up slag who's ditching school-

BUCK
- And because crap rolls downhill.

George is furious. He raises his hand to hit Buck.

BUCK
Go on - but just remember, man, I didn't like amp you to move here! I didn't ask ya t'sell your soul t'the terts.

They stare at each other angrily. - Finally George just chuckles bitterly. Shakes his head. ...And leaves.


INT. AN APARTMENT - NIGHT - A TELEPHONE

is RINGING. A hand picks it up. It is Burns.

BURNS
Yeah, hello?

A MAN'S VOICE
This Burns?

BURNS
Yeah.

THE MAN'S VOICE
I seen it.

BURNS
Seen what? Who is this?

THE MAN'S VOICE
I seen the thing that come outta the skin.

BURNS
(antenna up now)
Where?

THE MAN'S VOICE
You pay me?

BURNS
Yeah. If it really is something.

THE MAN'S VOICE

Oh... it's somethin' alright. ...But you better hurry.

BURNS
Where are you?

THE MAN'S VOICE
413 East Washington. Alley by the liquor store. Better hurry.

The phone goes dead. Burns stares at it. Hangs up. Runs off.

ACT FIVE

EXT. A GRITTY STREET BORDERING SLAGTOWN - NIGHT - BURNS

hurries across the wet pavement toward a liquor store which also has a display of brand name sour milk in the window. Then he catches sight of a man waving to him from the shadows. He looks

a bit healthier than the average street person.

BURNS
You the guy who called?

THE INFORMANT
Yeah.

BURNS
Where is it?

THE INFORMANT
Let's see some bread, man.

BURNS
Take me to it first.

THE INFORMANT
No bread, no bug, baby.

BURNS
Alright, here.
(handing some cash)

THE INFORMANT
Get serious. Worth more than -

BURNS
After I get a shot of it.

THE INFORMANT
(weighs it, then)
Awright, awright... Down here.

He shuffles down the dark alley. Burns follows, nervously readying his camera.


INT. SIKES' APARTMENT - NIGHT - SIKES

has a cup of tea and Tuggs' files spread before him. He's squinting at a particular file with the handwritten title, "Newcomers - Slaves from Deep Space." He mumbles Tuggs' words.

SIKES
"And from two of them I have heard a word that sounds like..." What the hell is that word? - "...'Kleeze-antz-un' - but so far I've been unable to get a meaningful translation. It seems to be a word that they deny knowledge of - or that frightens them."

Sikes looks up with a thoughtful frown.

INT. CATHY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT - HER TELEPHONE

is ringing in the dark apartment. She's just coming in when her answering machine picks up.

CATHY'S VOICE
Hi, this is Cathy. Leave word-

CATHY
(picking up the phone)
Hang on, hang on. - Hello?

INT. THE SHADOWY ROOM - NIGHT - THE NEWCOMER SURGEON

THE NEWCOMER SURGEON
Cathy Frankel? ...{Jelana Vray?}

CATHY
{Yes?}

THE NEWCOMER SURGEON
{It's Ramna.}

CATHY
(drawing a breath)
{What do you want?}

RAMNA
{We need your help.}

CATHY
(tight-lipped)
{My help? I'm sure you can get along quite well without-}

RAMNA
{Please, Jelana, it's very-}

CATHY
{I have nothing to say to you. Don't call me again.}

She hangs up the phone. Stares at it. Then a KNOCK at her door startles her. she moves to it, warily

CATHY
Who's there?

SIKES (O.S.)
Me. Sikes.

She opens the door. He's got Tuggs' file in his hands.

SIKES
Got a sec?

CATHY
Sure.

He eyes her a minute. Wondering if her skin might come off.

CATHY
What is it?

SIKES
(shows her the file)
Uhh... what does this word mean? - "Kleeze-antz-un?"

Sikes notices that she has a slight reaction to the word. ...Then she pronounces it in the Newcomer language:

CATHY
{"Kleeze-antz-un."} - What is this paper?

SIKES
My partner was working on this before he got killed. Always interested in slavery. Used t'say he was gonna write a book someday. Guess he started talking t'some of you about being slaves.
(flipping pages)
He couldn't understand why you all were so... here it is... "One of the most curious aspects of Newcomers slavery was their apparent submissiveness."

CATHY
Yes. We were completely submissive.

SIKES
Why?

CATHY
(a shrug)
We just were. Since then I've often wondered myself. I can't imagine being that way now.

SIKES
I can't imagine being that way at all. - "None of them remembers any example of revolt among the slaves such as Sparticus among the Greeks, or John Brown in America. What's more, none of them could remember anyone to revolt against - Is that right?

CATHY
...Yes.

SIKES
So who ran the ship? Who were you slaves for?

CATHY
We never saw anyone but ourselves.

SIKES
And we never found out who the ones were flying your ship 'cause it blew up so soon after it got here. - 'course, whoever was in charge coulda just blended in with the rest of you.

CATHY
If they looked like us, yes.

SIKES
(a beat)
Okay, what about this word?

CATHY
(troubled)
It's a very old word.

SIKES
Meaning...

CATHY
It's hard to translate... I -

SIKES
Tuggs was right, you are frightened of it.

CATHY
(a breath)
I guess we are. It's strange. It's a very deep fear, like a child frightened of the dark.

SIKES
Why?

CATHY
I don't know.
(off his look)
I really don't. It's almost subconscious... it's...

SIKES
So what does it mean?

CATHY
...There are really two meanings - one would be like "Lord-over" or "Seeingover..."

SIKES
"Overseer?" - That's what the men were called who whipped the American slaves in line back in the 1800's.
(pondering)
You said there were two meanings... what was the other?

CATHY
(looking at him)
...Demon.


EXT. THE ALLEY NEAR SLAGTOWN - NIGHT - BURNS & THE INFORMANT

Make their way down a ragged hillside. The L.A. skyline can be seen in the b.g., but the f.g. is very unsettling: a dump with abandoned cars, ratty furniture, and a large concrete tunnel, spattered with graffiti, which disappears into the ominous darkness of the hillside. The Informant points.

BURNS
In there?

THE INFORMANT
Yeah. Musta gone back in. I seen it around the outside. Draggin' So something.

BURNS
What?

THE INFORMANT
I dunno. Mighta been a body.

BURNS
How long ago?

THE INFORMANT
Just before I -

With a FEARSOME SHRIEK - THE CREATURE is upon them!

The action and cutting are frenetic Giving only IMPRESSIONISTIC GLIMPSES as Burns and The Informant try to fend off the beast! It is definitely INSECT-LIKE and taller that they are! It slashes at them with frightening, pincher-like claws on the ends of two long, and two shorter arms!

What we glimpse of the body is black, part husk-like, part bristling, and shiny with slime!

Burns tries to bring his camera up, but it is knocked away. The Creature's horrific face rears up in the shadows over Burns. Before he can get a good look, a spray of liquid causes his clothes to smoke and smolder. It's acid!

He yelps and scrambles to one side, clutching his hand and leg which have also been ravaged by the acid. He hears SCREAMS:

THE INFORMANT
No! Help me! For God's Sakes

Burns looks back, dazed, and sees The Informant being dragged off quickly toward the tunnel by the thick-legged beast.

BURNS
Help! Somebody! HELP!

Burns struggles against his pain, grabs his camera, and fires off a few flash photos just before The Creature disappears into the darkness and The Informant's cries are drowned in a hideous gurgle!

Burns lies on the filthy ground, breathing hard, panicked.


INT. A HOSPITAL ROOM - DAY

SIKES
And that's all you saw?

ANGLE TO INCLUDE GEORGE & BURNS

who is trussed up in a hospital bed. George is BLINKING more than normal.

BURNS
That's enough, doncha think? They find the other guy?

GEORGE
No. Not yet.

BURNS
(proudly)
Y'see my photo.

SIKES
Yeah.

He's looking at it. Fuzzy, but clear enough to be alarming.

BURNS
Ever see anything like it?

SIKES
...I haven't.

Sikes is doing his best not to look at George. The strain between them is palpable. George BLINKS again.

GEORGE
Mr. Burns, I'd like you to consider asking your publisher not to print this.

BURNS
(incredulous)
What? You gotta be - Is he kidding!? - You got something t'hide, pal?

Sikes waits for an answer to that one, too.

GEORGE
No. I do not. I just hate to see the public alarmed unnecessarily.

BURNS
Unnecess - ! What do ya think sprayed me with formic acid? A butterfly? There's something really dangerous out there and the public has a right to know.

GEORGE
I just think until we-

BURNS
Forget it. We got a special edition hitting the streets right now, and it's already on the wires.

George stares at him a moment. Gives up. Blinks. Heads out.

GEORGE
I have an appointment this morning, Matt. I'll be back at the station shortly.
(he leaves)

BURNS
(low)
Better watch out for him, man. - we better watch out for all of 'em.

Sikes looks at Burns, who nods to emphasize his point.


INT. A KITCHEN - DAY - DIANE

the woman who had brought Susan the flowers at the beginning is watching her TV with some concern. Burns' photo is onscreen.

TV ANNOUNCER
And since the release of this photo, reactions have run the spectrum from humorous skepticism to outright fear. Opinion polls show a major drop in those who were for the passage of Proposition 16 - the Constitutional Amendment which would give a new species - the Newcomers - the right to vote. Critics of Newcomers were very outspoken:

Diane's doorbell RINGS as the Purist Leader appears onscreen.

THE PURIST LEADER
We have every reason to be frightened. We have never encountered their kind before, and we don't yet know how different they may be from us!

Diane has moved to the back door, opening it to find

SUSAN
Hi.

DIANE
Oh. Hi.

Diane tries to cover her uneasiness with a smile. And can't. Susan senses it immediately. Holds up some flowers.

SUSAN
I... uh... wanted to bring you these. They're from the plant you brought us.

DIANE
Oh. Great. Thanks.

SUSAN
I was really pleased. I've usually got sort of a black thumb, every time I look at a plant it leans over and-

DIANE
I'm sorry, I left somebody hanging on the phone.

SUSAN
Oh. Well, sure. Thanks again.

DIANE
Yeah.

She closes the door. Stands inside looking at the flowers like they might be diseased. - Susan stands outside. A beat.


EXT. AN AUTO SALVAGE YARD - DAY - A NEWCOMER MANAGER

leads George among wrecked autos. Notices George BLINKING.

THE MANAGER
Right down this way. - Gettin' a cold, huh?

GEORGE
(rubbing his eyes)
Yeah.

THE MANAGER
Just got over one. Ain't one thing it's another. See that bug story they're layin' on us now? What a loada crap. - There it is.

He points toward a dark station wagon. There are a series of two-inch holes blown out down the side of it.

THE MANAGER
Poor guy... what was his name?

GEORGE
Tuggs.

THE MANAGER
Yeah. Never had a chance. Lookit them holes.

George walks slowly along beside the car. Touching the holes. There is dried blood around the last one.

THE MANAGER
That's where he bought it. - You're lucky it's still here. Order came down to scrap it a week ago. I just been too busy.

GEORGE
...Who signed the order?

THE MANAGER
Have t'check.

GEORGE
Would you?

The man nods and walks away. George looks more closely at the last hole - then notices a much smaller hole nearby it. He inspects it carefully - reacting to something unusual.


EXT. EMILY'S SCHOOL CAFETERIA - DAY - MARK

in his wheelchair, and two other boys are Suppressing giggles as they approach Emily who is eating by herself and reading. - Just as they get up to her, one of the boys whips out a can of BUG SPRAY and sends a cloud of it at Emily.

MARK
Oh no! RAID'S HERE!

The other boys shout out in mock terror, "Raid! Oh Not Argghh! etc." grab at their throats and fall "dead" across the table.

Emily closes her book. Gets up almost regally, and leaves them convulsed with LAUGHTER behind her. Jill is coming toward her with a tray full of lunch.

JILL
Hey, Em, I was just -

EMILY
Why don't you go play with your friends.

JILL
Hey, c'mon, I -

But Emily's gone. Jill stares after her. Turns gruffly.

JILL
Fine. Forget it.


INT. THE POLICE STATION - SIKES

SIKES
(hanging up his phone)
'Nother report of slag-bashing.

GEORGE
(walking in)
Hey. Y'mind?

SIKES
What can I tell ya, man.

GEORGE
You can tell me it's "an assault."

George looks away, blinking. Sikes gives him a prissy look behind his back. Albert approaches, with some old clothes.

ALBERT
Lt. S-Sikes? ...These what y'had in mind?

SIKES
Yeah... perfect. Try that on.

He throws an old raincoat at George, who grits his teeth and BLINKS several times.

GEORGE
What is this for?

SIKES
Something wrong with your eyes?

GEORGE
What's this for?

SIKES
I'm taking y'to a dress-up affair tonight. Want ya t'fit in, ...if that's possible. What's wrong with your eyes.

GEORGE
I have a cold.

SIKES
What're y'talkin' about? When y'get a cold y'get a runny nose. Y'sneeze.

GEORGE
We blink.

SIKES
(a chuckle)
Oh, gimme a break. I'd hate t'think of what happens when you're constipated!

George finally blows. Grabs Sikes by the collar, angrily pulls him up face to face. Everyone around them reacts.

GEORGE
Whey we're constipated we go into cataleptic fits! We usually grab the nearest human - particularly if he's smartass cop - and throw him out a window.

Sikes tries to shake free, but George tightens his grip and LIFTS SIKES off the floor!

GEORGE
- I can't help being a Newcomer any more than Yam can help having a skull full of manure. So let's try to overlook each other's peculiarities, shall we?

He throws Sikes back down into his chair. Before Sikes can decide how to react, George throws an envelope into his lap.

SIKES
What the hell is this?

GEORGE
(low, angry)
I found it inside the car Tuggs was hiding behind.

In the envelope is a long, narrow bullet.

SIKES
What?

GEORGE
It came from in front, not behind. I think it's what killed him.
(leaning closer)
Too bad they weren't aiming at you.

He turns on his heel and leaves Sikes behind. Stunned.

CAPTAIN GRAZER

has come out of his office. Speaks aside to Dobbs...

GRAZER
What's the problem?

DOBBS
Just what happens when y'promote 'em, Captain. They get uppity.


EXT/INT. BROREN-DOWN WAREHOUSE (FROM SCENE 1) - LATE DAY

Buck and his gang are bringing in more stolen furniture.

SVABO
{Yeah, this's great man! Just like home!}

BLENTU
{Better'n home.}

BUCK
{Damn straight.}

Suddenly part of a wall crashes down, revealing EIGHT BLACK YOUTHS. Tough-looking and dangerous.

THE BLACK LEADER
You picked the wrong place to hunker, slags!

And they erupt at Buck's gang, one has a C02 extinguisher! It's spray incapacitates one of the Newcomers.

THE BLACK LEADER
How 'bout a little salt water, dude!?

He squirts it right in Svabo's face! Svabo yelps as the water burns and smokes on his skin like acid!

Buck dives onto the black leader. The fighting is furious - hand to hand - and the blacks quickly realize they may have underestimated the Newcomers' prodigious strength.

Svabo throws one through a window.

Blentu fights his way through the C02, grabs his opponent throat. Slugs him mercilessly.

Another black kid dives on Buck, knocking him down into the area where The Vagrant had been in scene one. Buck gets some of the SLIME on his jacket.

The blacks pound him, but Buck's fury is no match for them. He hurls the one away, bouncing him off a wall. - During the struggle, a real PISTOL falls from one kid's pocket. - Buck looks up to see the leader pull out a pistol of his own - and FIRE a SHOT at Buck.

Buck scrambles across the floor, scoops up the fallen pistol as another BULLET RICOCHETS near him. He rolls over and FIRES - hitting the leader in the stomachs The youth drops, gasping.

Buck stares - amazed and frightened. The others have reacted to the shot - startled! The blacks break off the fight, panicky, two rush to their leader, SHOUTING EPITHETS at the Newcomers. There are distant SIRENS approaching.

SVABO
Out! Get him out or we'll kill you all!

The blacks retreat, carrying their badly wounded comrade. The Newcomer gang is jubilant around Buck.

BLENTU
(Great shot, Finiksa!}

SVABO
{Yeah! You see that sucker fold up! - Boom?!}

BLENTU
{I think you killed him, man! That'll teach 'em!}

The SIRENS are closer.

SVABO
{C'mon, let's dust it.}

They start to run off, look back at Buck who's frozen in place, pulse racing, breathing hard, staring.

BLENTU
{Finiksa! - C'mon, man!}

Buck comes into the moment. Pockets the gun. Runs with them.


INT. SIKES' APARTMENT HALLWAY - NIGHT - A NEWCOMER

moves to Cathy's door. Knocks gently. She opens it. Is surprised to see the Newcomer surgeon, RAMNA. Her first instinct is to close the door in his face.

RAMNA
Jelana, please, I assure you it's a matter of great importance or I never would've come. - Please put the past behind us.

A beat. Cathy is very reluctant.

RAMNA
It's truly a matter of life and death... most probably death.

She stares - just as Sikes comes out of his door - dressed in the old ratty clothes. By explanation he winks, says:

SIKES
Late date.

Cathy forces a little smile, preoccupied with Ramna, whom she admits and closes the door.


INT. GEORGE'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT - GEORGE, SUSAN & EMILY

GEORGE
Maybe the girl... Jill... was trying to help you before, Em. When she gave you the wig.

EMILY
But then she laughed with the rest of them, daddy.

GEORGE
And that hurts, I know. I feel badly at work sometimes... get angrier than I should... It's... going to take a little time, Em... But it'll -

Susan gets up abruptly. Walks out. George keeps focused.

GEORGE
- It'll change. You'll see. ...You have much homework?

EMILY
A little. About Indians.

GEORGE
Oh - I'd like to hear about that. - I'll be right back, okay?

INT. THEIR LAUNDRY ROOM - SUSAN

is loading the washer. Tight-lipped. The back door opens and Buck enters. Wired. Overly cheerful. Even Kisses her.

BUCK
Hey, mom. How's it going

SUSAN
...About like usual. - Give me that jacket, you've got something all over it.

He strips it off. A bit of the SLIME brushes onto Susan's arm, but she ignores it as George enters.

GEORGE
Sus...

BUCK
Hey, pops. Be down in a minute.

He exits. George glances after him, curious about Buck's upbeat attitude. Then looks at his wife.

GEORGE
Sus, we've really both got to -

SUSAN
It's hard for me sometimes at S.C., but at least I'm older.

GEORGE
Does everyone treat you badly?

SUSAN
Of course not. And the ones who do I can deal with. But Emmy's only nine, I can't stand it when people hurt her. - I hate it, George. I hate it!

GEORGE
So do I, Sus. But we -

THEIR LIVING ROOM WINDOW

is SHATTERED as a rock CRASHES through its - Emily screams:

EMILY
Momma!! MOMMA!

George and Susan rush in. Susan pulls Emily into a doorway.

SUSAN
Em! Emmy!? Are you okay!?

BUCK
(running in)
What happened?!

George has run to look out the window. He sees

A PICK UP TRUCK IN THE STREET - INTERCUT

peeling away with a few men, including a couple of blacks, on the back. Shouting "Dirty slags!" - "Damn BUG people!" - "Go back to Slagtown!" - "Get the hell out!" - "We're gonna exterminate ya!" - George and Buck watch them speed away.

SUSAN
Do you see! Do you SEE, dammit!

GEORGE
Sus -

SUSAN
NO! - DON'T START! It's not worth it, George! - Nothing's worth this! I don't want my children to go through this anymore, do you hear me!? I want to go back. I'd rather live in that Slagtown hovel for the rest of my life-

GEORGE
And how about the rest of their lives? And their children's lives?

SUSAN
It's not worth it, George. Not to me.
(exiting with Emily)
...Not for my kids.

George stares after her. Then looks back at Buck, who stands in the middle of the shattered glass, feeling the weight of the rock in his hand - and looking off into the night.

ACT SIX

INT. CAPTAIN GRAZER'S OFFICE - DAY - SIKES

is entering. Grazer looks up.

GRAZER
Hey Sikes, have fun playin' homeless last night?

SIKES
Almost as much fun as bein' a captain.

GRAZER
Hey. I'm sorry they promoted me and not you, okay? - You and George see any bugs last night?

SIKES
No. And I was out on my own. He had a problem at home.

GRAZER
Sounded like you two had a problem here yesterday. That what this is about?

SIKES
No. ...I want an autopsy on Tuggs.

GRAZER
What? - He's dead and buried.

SIKES
They never did an autopsy.

GRAZER
C'mon, you saw him. So did I.

He reaches into a box and extracts a thin cigar.

SIKES - CLOSE - INTERCUT

the CAMERA moves closer as he watches Grazer light the cigar.

GRAZER
What's an autopsy gonna show?

SIKES
...Can I order one?

Grazer eyes him, rolls the cigar between his fingers...

GRAZER
...Sure.


INT. EMILY'S SCHOOL - MAIN OFFICE - DAY - SUSAN

enters stiffly, aware that she's the only Newcomer in the room.

SUSAN
I'd like to see the principal.

THE RECEPTIONIST
(smiling)
You must be Emily's mother.

SUSAN
How'd you guess.

THE RECEPTIONIST
Oh, we all know which one She is. ...Y'know, I'd just like to tell you that my husband works with a couple of your kind down at that post office. And they're real polite. They're just fine.

SUSAN
I'm so glad.

The BLACK TEACHER moves through the b.g., overhearing.

THE RECEPTIONIST
Can I tell Ms. Stevens what you want to see her about?

SUSAN
Withdrawing my daughter.

THE RECEPTIONIST
Oh. I'm sorry t'hear that. Well, she's in a meeting right now. If you'd like to wait -

SUSAN
Yes. Where's the women's room?

INT. THE WOMEN'S ROOM - SUSAN

is rinsing off her face, looking at her tired eyes. The Black Teacher enters, washes her hands, CHUCKLES. Susan looks at her.

THE BLACK TEACHER
Just thinking about when there used t'be three kinds of restrooms.

SUSAN
Three?

THE BLACK TEACHER
Men, Women, ..and Colored.

SUSAN
...Really?

THE BLACK TEACHER
I'm old enough to have aped 'em. ...Things change, though. They do change. If you want 'em to badly enough. - I remember this old black woman, Miss Jane Pittman. She used to pass this particular water fountain every day. The White Folks' water fountain. - Then one day, y'know what she did? She went right up to it and took a drink.
(smiling)
Lord, but didn't all hell break loose. "Nigger drunk outta the white fountain! Nigger done this, nigger done that!" - One of 'em became the mayor of Los Angeles. One of 'em's the mayor of Atlanta. Atlanta! - One of 'em ran for President. ...One of 'em will be President someday.
(she smiles, sighs)
Hard to take that first drink, though. Takes a lot of courage to be like old Miss Jane.

A pause. Susan looks at her for a long moment, but finally looks away.

SUSAN
...At least they weren't afraid she'd turn into an insect.

THE BLACK TEACHER
(a chuckle)
Honey, I can show you people who still think black people have rabbit blood - and that Jews have horns.
(giving her a pat)
You don't look like a cockroach t'me.

Their eyes meet again. The woman smiles and leaves. Susan stands alone. And then she looks at herself in the mirror.


EXT. A SEEDY STREET - NIGHT - A POSTER

says, "Vote YES on 16" - but has a big "NO" sprayed on it. Sikes & George, DRESSED AS VAGRANTS, shuffle around a corner. George is blinking less, but he and Sikes are still restrained.

SIKES
Who?

GEORGE
The guy Tuggs pulled out of the car just before he got killed.

SIKES
You talked to him?

GEORGE
Yes. Said he couldn't swear to it, but he thought he did hear a gunshot come from in front of Tuggs.

Sikes looks at him. George keeps looking forward, checking out the streets and alleys, while Sikes reviews...

SIKES
Alright. So Tuggs is doing this research on why you all were such submissive slaves, - hears about these Overseers who may have been in charge of you, - gets the address of a plant owned by a underworld type-

GEORGE
Which smelled like the inside of our spacecraft...

SIKES
Right. And somebody kills him - but makes it look like he died in action.

GEORGE
Maybe. Did they exhume his body?

SIKES
Yeah. Autopsy's tonight. - Let's check down this alley.

GEORGE
There's nothing down there.

SIKES
It's pitch black, how - You see as well as you smell, huh?

GEORGE
Yes. - How 'bout over there?

Sikes nods. They cross toward another dark street.


INT. EMILY'S BEDROOM - NIGHT - EMILY

lies in bed reading "David Copperfield." She hears a TAP at her window. Frowns. Moves to it. Sees Jill outside. Opens it.

EMILY
What're you -

JILL
My mom went out to one of her stupid Purist meetings. - I want to say I'm sorry. ...I really am.

EMILY
You made me put that wig on just so they all could laugh at me. That wasn't very nice.

JILL
No, really! I thought it might make you feel better. More like one of us, you know? It just didn't work.

EMILY
(agreeing)
Yeah, it was a dumb idea. I can't be something I'm not.

JILL
Well anyway, I just wanted you to know I felt bad.

EMILY
Thanks.

JILL
My mom doesn't want me to play with you.

EMILY
Yeah, okay.

She reaches to close the window. Jill stops her.

JILL
But I want to. We could play at your house, or in the park. She wouldn't have to know, if you want.

Emily smiles.


EXT. LOS ANGELES - NIGHT - BROKEN DOWN WAREHOUSE.

SIKES
Your not blinking so much. Your cold's better, huh?

GEORGE
Yes, thank you.

SIKES
Good. So who sent down the order to have the car scrapped? "Captain" Grazer?

GEORGE
No. A man named Donald Wilks.
(off Sikes' reaction)
I take it you know him.

SIKES
Yeah. ...He's the assistant D.A.

For the first time tonight they really LOOK at each other. - Then George looks off sharply, SNIFFING the air.

SIKES
What?

GEORGE
Formic acid.

They both react. George indicates a direction.

A NEARBY FACTORY AREA - GEORGE & SIKES

peer warily through industrial equipment. Their eyes widen.

THEIR POV - INTERCUT

glimpsed through the shadows is The Creature! Sikes whispers:

SIKES
Holy...! - Look at that thing!

GEORGE
(into a two-way)
This is 13, we've got a target in the factory yard, 1200 Alameda. Request Air Ten.

SIKES
C'mon - we're gonna lose it.

GEORGE
...Like hell.

George takes the lead, skirting in the shadows.

They catch another glimpse of The Creature, moving through a broken door into the factory.

They edge warily along the side. Find a panel in the metal wall which is bent out. Without looking back, George slides through and inside.

THE FACTORY

which is damp, dark. Rusting heavy-duty chains and pulleys hang from the darkness above. George moves carefully. Sikes close behind, gun drawn, tense. They whisper...

GEORGE
Where'd it go?

SIKES
Beats the hell outta me.

From outside comes the sound of an approaching helicopter - and suddenly it's white-hot ARC LIGHT knifes in through the overhead windows, cutting sharp streaks through the gloom - and revealing the silhouette of The Creature - on a large generator right behind and above them! It reacts! Sikes spins!

SIKES
There!!

He squeezes off three SHOTS as The Creature SHRIEKS and lands on top of him - simultaneously knocking George into a shallow concrete pit.

The helicopter roars outside. The blazing, moving streaks from its arc light provide bizarre illumination against the stark blackness as Sikes struggles in the grasp of the beast's four arms!

George is scrambling to get out of the pit!

Sikes sees an ugly sphincter in The Creature's neck articulate and he can guess what's coming - he shoves his arm in front of it, just as the acid spews out - deflecting it from his face, but getting it on his hand! He shouts with pain! - Fights harder, digging his hand into The Creature's bristling back!

George gets up to the edge of the pit, tries to get a clear shot - but is fearful of hitting Sikes. - Finally he aims lower and FIRES two shots, hitting The Creature in the leg!

It SCREECHES and drops Sikes - skitters clumsily into the darkness. - George rushes to him.

GEORGE
Acid?!

SIKES
On my left hand! Ahhg!

George whips out a plastic bag of white powder and pours it over Sikes wounded hand.

GEORGE
Alkali, it'll cut the acid and - What?

He sees that Sikes is looking at something clutched in his good right hand. Sikes is amazed...

SIKES
...Son of a bitch.

GEORGE
Is that a piece of it?!

Sikes leaps to his feet, furiously running after The Creature.

GEORGE
Matt? - Matt!?

SIKES
(bellowing)
- It's Velcro!

GEORGE
- What!?

THE CREATURE

is scrambling through the darkness. Sikes leaps on it's back!

SIKES
You son of a bitch!

He digs his hands into The Creature's bristling back and RIPS it apart - revealing the back of the MAN inside!

George rushes to help, and together they strong-arm the "Creature" to the floor, pulling the heavy costume back revealing the huge brute within - who still struggles - until George presses his gun against the brute's neck.

GEORGE
Stop fighting or die.

Potent words. Resistance ceases. Sikes pulls harder on the costume, revealing ANOTHER MAN, very small and thin, inside the costume in front of the brute - providing the second pair of arms.

Sikes & George share a glance of amazement - then hear:

A MAN'S VOICE
(urgent whisper)
Bernie? Bernie? You here?

SIKES
(prods the brute)
Answer him. Call him, dammit.

THE BRUTE
Over here!

Two men move forward through the shadows.

THE MAN'S VOICE
What the hell happened? Are you-

GEORGE
Hands on your heads. You're under
arrest.

They start to run. George FIRES in the air.

GEORGE
- DID you hear me?!

The men stop. Comply.

GEORGE
Walk this way.

They come slowly into the light. One of them is The Informant whom Burns thought had been killed. The other is... The Purist Leader. - Sikes & George glance at each other. Sikes blows out an incredulous PUFF, and George goes back to work...

GEORGE
You have the right to remain silent...


INT. SIKES' APARTMENT - NIGHT - SIKES

enters, whistling, carrying a pizza and a six-pack. He taps his phone machine. Pulls off his ratty clothes, his hand is bandaged.

CATHY'S VOICE
(sounding distressed)
Matt, um...If you could knock on my door - whenever you get in, no matter how late, there's something...important I'd like to talk to you about. Bye.

Click. Beep.

A YOUNG WOMAN'S VOICE
Daddee! Hi, it's your number one daughter. Listen, I've really been missing you. So let's have dinner Saturday, can we, huh? Can we? - I'd like you to meet this really neat guy I've been spending some time with. His name's Mark Twain. Now don't freak out-

Sikes sourly shuts off the machine. Puffs angrily...

SIKES
...Wonderful. That's just...


INT. THE HALLWAY OUTSIDE SIKES' APARTMENT - SIKES

goes to Cathy's door, taps.

SIKES
Ms. Frankel... you...

The door opens slightly. It's unlocked. His antennae go up.

CATHY'S PLACE - SIKES

peers in. It's uncharacteristically NEAT. Something's wrong. He reaches for his gun, but has taken it off. Then A MAN in a three piece, pin stripe suit comes out of the bedroom.

THE MAN
Hi there.

SIKES
I suppose you've got a badge.

THE MAN
(flashing one)
Yep. Randall. BNA.

SIKES
Newcomer Affairs? ...Where's Cathy?

RANDALL
(a professional smile)
I believe she took a little trip.

SIKES
To where?

RANDALL
You a friend of hers?

SIKES
Neighbor.

RANDALL
Ah. What exactly do you know about her, Mr...

SIKES
Greenjeans. Where is she?

RANDALL
I'm not at liberty to say.

SIKES
Yeah? -
(grabbing him)
Well, your not gonna be at liberty till y'do. I've had a helluva day, pal, and I'm in no mood for -

THLUNK! Sikes takes a hard rabbit punch across the neck. He's knocked out.

SIKES - CLOSE - MOMENTS LATER

RANDALL'S VOICE
(echoing)
...Lieutenant... Lieutenant..?

Sikes eyes open slightly, dazedly, as though drugged.

SIKES' SUBJECTIVE POV - HAZY, DISORIENTED

Agent Randall is leaning over. Someone else, a big NEWCOMER hovers in the b.g., taking a hypodermic from Randall, whose voice echo's throughout.

RANDALL
That's it... here I am... can you hear me...?

SIKES
...Mmmm...

RANDALL
...Good. Very good... Now I want you to tell me something, Lieutenant... And you want to tell me, don't you...?
(off Sikes' bleary nod)
That's very good...Just tell me what you know about ...The Overseers...

Sikes blinks heavily. Struggles to think. Finally shakes his head slightly.

RANDALL
Surely you must know something.

Sikes shakes his head again. The Newcomer in the b.g. is annoyed, angry. Randall eases him back.

RANDALL
If he knew anything, he'd talk. This is powerful stuff.
(to Sikes)
...Are you sure, lieutenant?
(off Sikes reaction)
Alright then, just go back to sleep... that's right... and when you wake up you won't remember this little conversation, will you? ...You won't remember...

Sikes' eyes drift closed again. He sleeps. Fitfully.


INT. A JAIL CELL - NIGHT - TITO

the Latino whom Sikes & George busted earlier, is lying in the shadows on his bunk, gasping. His breathing is pained, he rolls over into a beam of light - which reveals the UGLY SORES which have spread over his face and neck. - He GROANS in anguish. - He's in big trouble.


ACT SEVEN

INT. GEORGE'S HOUSE - BUCK'S BEDROOM - DAY - BUCK

is getting dressed, and listening nervously to his radio.

RADIO VOICE
And since the discovery that the insect-like creature was merely a hoax concocted by radical Purists, the opinion polls have swung back the other way - showing about 54% of the population now willing to pass Proposition 16, giving Newcomers the right to vote. - Doctors at Queen of Angels Hospital this morning -

Buck freezes, stares at the radio -

RADIO VOICE
- are still keeping a close eye on that sixteen year old black youth who was wounded in a gang-related shooting yesterday. His condition worsened during the night, and he has been placed on the critical list. Authorities are still looking for his assailant, believed to be a member of a rival Newcomer gang. - on Wall Street at this hour...

Buck is immobile. His blood is ice.

INT. GEORGE'S HOUSE - THE BATHROOM - SUSAN

is just finishing a shower, drying off inside the stall. George is fixing his tie in the mirror. Her voice reflects a new, more centered fortitude.

SUSAN
George...

GEORGE
Hmm?

SUSAN
I've decided to let Emily stay in this school. - For a little while longer, anyway.

He pauses. Smiles.

SUSAN
You're smiling, aren't you?

GEORGE
Yes.

SUSAN
Well, I might change my mind again tomorrow, so don't press me, okay?

GEORGE
I won't.

SUSAN
(coming out)
You must be pretty pleased with yourself, after last night.

GEORGE
It was rewarding, yes. Just to know that that creature was only a fiction and there was nothing seriously - biologically - wrong.

SUSAN
Well, I'm proud of you.

She gives him a little HUM on the neck. He smiles, exits. Susan spreads on some lotion - and notices a small red RASH on her arm. Touches it quizzically. Shrugs it off.


EXT. A PARK PLAYGROUND - DAY - EMILY & JILL

are playing happily together. We watch their enjoyment.

JILL'S MOTHER (O.S.)
I can't believe it. - I'm really embarrassed.

REVERSE - A CAR

containing Jill's Mother - and the Purist Woman who was inciting the crowd at Emily's school.

JILL'S MOTHER
I'll put a stop to it right now.

She starts to open the car door, but the Woman restrains her.

THE WOMAN
No, no, no... let them play.

JILL'S MOTHER
(confused)
What?

THE WOMAN
This little friendship is something we can definitely use to our advantage.

Jill's Mother looks at the woman curiously. The woman keeps focused on the two little girls, and smiles enigmatically.


INT. THE POLICE STATION - DAY - A FROWNING SIKES

is moving through, passing

DOBBS
Hey Sikes, Grazer wants t'see you.

Sikes nods, heads off. Dobbs returns to paperwork, sipping coffee from a Styrofoam cup. - Albert approaches tentatively.

ALBERT
Sc-Scuse me, ...Sergeant Dobbs?

DOBBS
(disgruntled)
Yeah? Whaddaya want, Lightnin'?

ALBERT
I d-didn't do too great a job, but h-here...

He holds out Dobbs' personalized mug, which he has meticulously reconstructed and glued together. Dobbs blinks.

ALBERT
There's st-still a few chips. I c-couldn't find 'em all, but -

Dobbs is turning the mug over in his hands. Genuinely touched by Albert's effort.

DOBBS
...It's fine, y'did a nice job.

ALBERT
Y'really think so?

DOBBS
Yeah. - Lookit.

He puts the mug on his desk and pours his coffee into it.

DOBBS
Good as new. ...Thanks a lot.

ALBERT
You're w-welcome. And I'll try t'be m-more careful.

Dobbs smiles at him and nods. Albert walks away. Dobbs starts to lift the mug - but the handle BREAKS OFF in his hand. He mumbles in annoyance -

DOBBS
Aw, dammit. - Hey, Albert!

Albert turns to look back, with a gentle smile.

ALBERT
Yes, s-sergeant?

Dobbs looks at Albert's childlike, hopeful face... A beat. Then Dobbs HIDES the broken piece in his palm.

DOBBS
...Thanks again, man.

ALBERT
(beaming)
You're w-welcome. ...Man.

Albert walks away - on air. His day is made. Probably his whole week. Dobbs watches him. Reflectively.

INT. CAPTAIN GRAZER'S OFFICE - DAY

SIKES
Wanted to see me?

GRAZER
(Chewing his cigar)
Yeah, yeah. Listen Sikes, I'm taking you off that case about that vagrant. The missing body.

SIKES
How come? It been found?

GRAZER
Just don't worry about it, okay?

SIKES
Just a damn minute, "Captain - "

GRAZER
Don't start in with me, hot dog! - You'll get buried!
(a beat)
...Y'understand? ...Sikes?

Sikes stares at him. Nods slowly. Exits.

THE STATION OFFICE - SIKES

walks slowly and thoughtfully back to his desk. Looks up to see

GEORGE
What?

SIKES
What d'you know about the BNA?

GEORGE
(shrugs)
Their phone number?

SIKES
Dial it.

George does. Hands the phone to Sikes.

SIKES
Hello?... Hi... Agent Randall please...
(glances at George, mumbles)
Hey, look. I'm sorry I called ya a slag, huh?

George weighs it. Nods acceptance of the apology.

GEORGE
Sorry about the manure line.

Sikes shrugs. - Then listens on the phone.

SIKES
Yeah...I'm here.
(nods, hangs up)

GEORGE
...They have no Agent Randall.

SIKES
...Right. ...What a surprise.

A beat. George hands him a piece of paper.

GEORGE
The autopsy report on Tuggs.

SIKES
"In addition to the major wound sustained through the back there was...
(a glance at George)
"...There was another, much smaller entrance wound through the chest, piercing the heart and exiting the back." - Made by the bullet you found?

GEORGE
Full metal, steel jacket. 30 caliber.

SIKES
(looking up)
That's what the SWAT teams use.

GEORGE
(nodding, quietly)
Be may have been assassinated by a police weapon.

Sikes glances at George, then off toward

CAPTAIN GRAZER'S GLASS-PARTITIONED OFFICE - INTERCUT

Grazer has been looking at Sikes, but now looks away. Puffs his thin cigar.

Sikes ponders it all for a long moment.

SIKES
What have we got here, George old boy? ...What have we got?

GEORGE
Honestly, Matt? ...Beats the hell outta me.

Sikes looks up at George. Their eyes hold.


THE END